Carlos Sainz Jnr, Ferrari, Hungaroring, 2023

Sainz confirms he will leave Ferrari after 2024 season

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Carlos Sainz Jnr has confirmed the upcoming season will be his last as a Ferrari driver.

Last week Ferrari confirmed Sainz’s team mate Charles Leclerc had agreed a new contract to drive for them. However, following confirmation that Lewis Hamilton will move from Mercedes to Ferrari on 2025, Sainz has confirmed he will leave Maranello at the end of 2024, his fourth year as a Ferrari driver alongside Leclerc.

In a statement released on social media, Sainz said he would give “my absolute best” to Ferrari for his final season with them.

“Following today’s news, Scuderia Ferrari and myself will part ways at the end of 2024,” Sainz said.

“We still have a long season ahead of us and, like always, I will give my absolute best for the Team and for the Tifosi all around the world.”

Sainz said that news on where he would race beyond this season “will be announced in due course.”

The 29-year-old joined the team from McLaren in 2021, beating Leclerc in the championship over their first season as team mates together. Sainz secured his maiden career pole position and first grand prix victory the following season at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone. Last season, he was the only non-Red Bull driver to win a grand prix, taking victory in Singapore to end Red Bull’s record win streak.

A former Red Bull junior, Sainz entered Formula 1 alongside Max Verstappen at Toro Roso in 2015. He remained with the team until 2017, when he moved to Renault late in the season to replace Jolyon Palmer. After a full season with Renault in 2018, Sainz joined McLaren, racing with Lando Norris for two years before joining Ferrari.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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33 comments on “Sainz confirms he will leave Ferrari after 2024 season”

  1. now we wait for the “Sainz joins Mercedes in 2025” than the circle is complete

    1. Which came to my mind too, although I doubt it will happen. He’d be a fine placeholder until that kid Antonelli comes of age (if he proves himself, that is). On the other hand, Russel is not Hamilton, and he’s definitely not Verstappen; so having two kinda B+ level drivers won’t really help them in their fights against RB and Ferrari (nor McLaren if they stay competitive). Now Mercedes will be lucky to have 4th best driver combination on the grid (RB has Perez, true, but Verstappen makes up for that quote easily). They should bring Alonso for a couple of years, to entertain us; and then Antonelli if he’ll be ready.

      1. Maybe Russell was holding back? We will see in a few weeks what Russell really has up his sleeve.

    2. Mercedes is in bind now as they don’t have superstar driver for the first time. Russell/Sainz is a solid lineup, but I can see Sainz ending up at Red Bull if Danny Ric doesn’t have a great year.

      1. @cdfemke Dane
        By gut feeling, I see Albon as Hamilton’s most likely successor, & Red Bull Racing is doubtful for Sainz, especially as he hurt his chances back in 2017 by pushing for a Renault move at all costs.

      2. Or they opt for a direct swap….. or as @jerejj said probaly Albon joins Mercedes.

  2. Sainz has to be top of mind for Red Bull, Aston Martin, Audi and Mercedes now.

    Very unlucky for Sainz. He is doing very well and fully deserving of the Ferrari seat. But when Hamilton comes along, what do you do.

    1. Fezza is notorious for egregiously wrong strategic decisions, but this one takes the cake.

    2. I’m not sure – at Ferrari you’re either capable of fighting the team leader or the dutiful number 2. Sainz was neither.

  3. Well, the Sky Sports shouty transfer deadline day football show has rather amusingly got F1 headlines plastered all over it – so he could be loaned out to Nottingham Forest.

    1. Yeah – I do enjoy the fact that the biggest transfer story (by an absolute mile) on transfer deadline day is Lewis Hamilton moving to Ferrari!

      1. Kind of stole the thunder away from the Andretti debacle too!

  4. Sainz is bit unfortunate in that sense. He had a great debut season, but Verstappen was just that tad better and more impressive. And as noted, there are maybe two guys on the grid that a team wouldn’t push aside to make room for Hamilton. Tough luck.

    A Sauber into Audi move could be good. Aston Martin if Lance Stroll finally gets a ‘exciting new career opportunity’… it’d be a shame to see him drop out of the top 10. He’s good enough to race near the top.

    1. …Stroll finally gets a ‘exciting new career opportunity’


      If Aston wanted to up sales in Spain this would be a good pairing.

      I think the move to Audi would be more likely, especially since Daddy Sainz just won the Dakar for Audi.

      1. This year’s Dakar was Sr’s swan song. He’s retiring.

  5. I like the strategy devised by the Hamiltons. While dad throws up a smokescreen by going to see Horner at RB, Lewis talks to the Elkanns in Italy and seals a deal. This is worthy of Kimi’s old manager Mr Robertson.

    But why 2025 and not with immediate effect? That’s the question.

    1. Sainz is under contract until this year’s end, so getting everything sorted with immediate effect would be more complicated than for 2025 with only one contract termination needed.

      1. Sainz is under contract until this year’s end

        I doubt that Sainz’s redundancy clause would be the reason.
        More likely Hamilton’s contract with Mercedes. And they weren’t willing to cut it short due to a lack of alternatives.

      2. Or they opt for a direct swap….. but does Mercedes want Sainz?

  6. Mercedes might as well try with Alonso, who knows… what have they got to lose anyway?

    1. That could actually be a great move – to have Alonso with them for the 2 last season of his career, after which a great young candidate to replace would appear. Perhaps they could then go for somebody like Alex Palou? That would be fantastic.

    2. Alonso been there and do e that. After that experience i thibk neither want to repeat that

  7. Does this mean the Madrid GP’s off?

  8. Where to land Sainz?
    If I rank the current drivers on skill and potential (who would I hire), then I’d end up with something like:
    – Alonso, Hamilton, Verstappen clear top 3
    – Norris next biggest talent
    – Leclerc – strong(est) over 1 lap, but lacking too often on Sunday
    – Russell – disappointing 2023, his YoY improvement trajectory took a few steps back
    – Piastri – still miles behind the ones above, and a few below, but that after 1 season (I see potential)
    – Sainz – good on good days, bad on bad ones; but at least he can strategise – leader in a B team (or A- team))
    – Albon – a Swallow in 2023, but doubt he will be the next Summer.
    – Gasly – has some strong days
    – Ocon – even if he were faster than Gasly, he remains less likeable
    – Ricciardo – seems to be past his best before date. But nice enough to include in this list
    – Hulkenberg – just on the list to show that he missed the podium again.

    Not easy for Sainz to land a good seat. If Mercedes or Aston Martin (unlikely) ring then accept it with both hands. But maybe hope for a nice Audi or Alpine company car and enjoy the rest of his career just being part of the circus.
    Dakar 2025 with dad?

    1. Stong rumour says he’s gonna join sauber …. Uuh stake f1 next year

    2. Redbull is also an option for Sainz

  9. Not a fan but Mick Schumacher will get the seat, it checks several boxes: a German Drive in a German rooted car, good PR for Mercedes in Germany, already had him as a reserve driver, Wolff thought Mick was badly treated by Haas, Germany wants to see Micheal’s memory maintained, gives Mercedes a new ambassador in the future for Germany.

    1. There’s just one problem with that logic. Mick is nowhere near good enough.

      1. Not according to Toto ;)

  10. It will be hugely amusing if Sainz completely destroys Leclerc this season.

    I still can’t help but get the feeling Ferrari put their money on the wrong horse by choosing Leclerc. Time will tell.

    Quite possible that Sainz will end up sitting out a season rather than just taking the first opportunity that come up.

    1. This might come true, there is no repercussion they can put on him gor disobeing team orders now he’s out of contract anyway. Its a bit like rosberg did against lewis

      1. They can undermine his side of the garage with lesser talent, car upgrade delays, strategy etc. we have seen it before

        Tbh it will be harder than ever for Sainz to compete against the preferred driver this year.

        What will be interesting is the teams ranking of Hamilton and Leclerc next year. One an established champ but on the physical decline, the other a talent in his prime but without the prestige of WDCs

    2. Even when Sainz was driving his best, he was only edging Leclerc. Both are very good, but neither one is the complete package.

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