Ferrari Set to Decide Which F2 Auto Racer Will Get Bumped to F1 Come 2021
Ferrari is all set to decide which of their top-tier academy drivers will be getting called up in 2021 to Formula 1. The competitors currently standing for the position are Mick Schumacher, Callum Ilott, and Robert Shwartzman. Before the season finale of Formula 2 in Bahrain, the decision will be made, revealing Team Principal Mattia Binotto.
Schumacher and Illot are currently number one and two in the contest, but all three continue to have their eyes on the prize. According to sources, the three auto racers are also prepped to compete in the F2 championship this year.
Only one seat available for F1?
While Ferrari retains close links with both Haas and Alfa Romeo, it seems that the latter has decided to stick with Ferrari-backed Antonio Giovinazzi and Kimi Raikkonen for the upcoming F1 season. Haas, on the other hand, has announced that it will not be continuing with their current pairing of Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen. Naturally, this leaves only the position at Haas to be filled, with either Shwartzman, Ilott, or Schumacher.
So, how’s the decision coming along?
Just prior to the November 2020 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix race, Binotto was questioned with regards to the time it will take the company to reach a decision. The general assumption remained that Ferrari would be waiting until the end of the F2 season before revealing their pick.
Binotto, however, commented that the company has no plans to hide their pick until the final race in Abu Dhabi or Bahrain, and that surely, the selection will be made well before that, in the upcoming days.
Needless to say, the decision will not be an easy one. In October, Schumacher and Illot were scheduled to have an FP1 session at the Eifel Grand Prix, which had to be canceled due to heavy fog. The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, however, will be their second attempt at the FP1 run.
Seeing as Schumacher is currently in the lead, the auto racer will have to work extra hard on bringing his A-game to the tracks in the F2 finale. If Illot manages to beat him, though, it’s possible that Ferrari might find itself in a rut and will have to reconsider their decision.
Binotto also made sure to point out that Ferrari’s objective is not to bring the racers into F1. Rather it is to bring them to the Scuderia Ferrari, which is the model the company uses for F1 competitions. The path the racers take to achieve that goal, Binotto concluded, holds much less importance.
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