Silly season: 2014 F1 driver market

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    Prisoner Monkeys

    It’s believed di Resta did have some kind of contact with Caterham, but he has no budget.

    Prisoner Monkeys

    Latest stupid rumour: Robin Frijns to Marussia. He’s been linked to a drive with every other team, so why the help not?

    And Kamui Kobayashi has posted an update on Twitter (in Japanese, so I won’t repost it) saying that he has made his case and that the decision is now up to somebody else, but he hopes he will know what is happening by the end of the week.


    I have a feeling that if Marussia chooses a Frijns/Bianchi line-up, Caterham might as well just throw in the towel immediately.

    This line-up would consist of 2 of the most impressive young drivers who are easily able to adjust to their car and are also quick and clean drivers.

    With the drivers that still are available, it would be incredibly tough for Caterham to pick a line-up to rival that of Marussia in terms of talent, with only Nasr, Felix Da Costa and Vandoorne springing to mind.

    If this lineup will happen, it will probably be one of the interesting in-team battles next season (at least, if the Marussia MR03 isn’t completely terrible). Let’s just hope that the bad blood gained in the 2012 WSR 3.5 Finale is lost in that case!

    Prisoner Monkeys

    They’re not going to choose Frijns. He has no sponsorship, which is what the team needs.

    Force Maikel

    As much as I want Robin in F1, it’s not going to happen, from what I’ve been reading on Dutch forums he is most likely going to drive in DTM next year. Though I’m ready to be shocked again if he does get a drive in F1!

    R.J. O’Connell

    Surely they’d be signing Frijns for those three titles in a row in three different series from 2010-2012, because I can’t imagine anyone would sign him based on his underwhelming GP2 performances last year (Barcelona aside). Scoring points at a lesser rate than Johnny Cecotto is something an elite driver in the junior categories shouldn’t be doing, lack of pre-season testing and limited schedule aside.

    I’m also curious – would Kobayashi still be able to be half as aggressive and productive as he was at Sauber or Toyota? I’m not predicting points right now unless they come into pre-season and are on the pace of the rest of the midfield.

    Ben Furtula

    About 2 weeks ago Kamui Kobayashi wrote on Twitter, (in japenese) that he wasn’t that optimistic of getting the drive. Maybe now Caterham have had a change of heart? And can I ask does Kamui have sponsorship? Or some sort of money that Caterham are interested in?

    Prisoner Monkeys

    Surely they’d be signing Frijns for those three titles in a row in three different series from 2010-2012, because I can’t imagine anyone would sign him based on his underwhelming GP2 performances last year (Barcelona aside).

    I have managed to trace the source of the rumour back to … well, this:


    Someone, somewhere, had to look at this and say to themselves “Yes, this is a reliable source.”

    Iestyn Davies

    Sometimes it seems anything posted on the internet can be picked up by people and that sheer numbers lend it that credibility that “it must be from a reliable source, so many people are on this”. You could say the same about many superstitions, like the number 13 in the anglo-sphere. That US news channel and the racist names broadcast on air in response to a deadly plane crash is possibly the best example.

    Kobayashi does indeed have that sponsorship pot, that I saw quoted as £6.5m a long time ago, recently a bit less in Euros, maybe 5-6m Euros. So, a tidy pot that puts him well ahead of Di Resta, and probably Kovalainen if they need the cash for the experienced driver. If the other seat goes to a ‘rookie’, then we would be looking at Van der Garde with his money, Ericsson with fast adaptability and possibly some Swedish sponsors, and Frijns/Nasr who are ever present and hoping to be picked up.

    Given that Marussia have a Russian oligarch owner now, if they really threw the dice and took Frijns over Chilton (whose £10m sponsor pot is probably declining for this year with the loss of Aon) or even Nasr (still with some backing, and connections to a potential Williams reserve role), they would have a better chance at beating Caterham to that elusive 2014 10th WCC place early on in the season, which this time is worth a lot more (£30m vs. £4m last year). Caterham probably did better losing the £4m and gaining back from Van der Garde’s sponsors over paying Kovalainen. But, this year they could lose a lot – so their line up is now a lot more important than it was for 2013, possibly almost as important as it was in 2010/2011 (hence paying Kovalainen and Trulli, to guarantee that £30m per year from then onwards, while Marussia had Glock).


    Robin Frijns retweeted a really poor photoshop someone made of him in a Caterham overall.

    Meanwhile, I’m trying to dig up my drawing of Jos Verstappen in Ferrari overalls and see how long it takes before he was ‘considered to be a testdriver for Ferrari in 2002’.


    According to this article on Eurosport.se, Ericsson and Kobayashi will be confirmed as Caterham’s drivers “in a matter of days”.


    I’m not so sure about that one though..


    According to Aftonbladet, Ericsson will not be driving in Formula 1 in 2014. I’d say it is somewhat reliable because it is a Swedish site and they usually know better about their own drivers. I don’t bother to link it because it is in Swedish and I can barely understand it myself.

    Prisoner Monkeys

    If “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” has taught me anything, it is that Aftonbladet is a reliable publication. Except for when it comes to reporting on corrupt Swedish industrialists or the secret service. So unless Ericsson had something to do with the assassination of Olof Plame, I’d be willing to trust it.

    It could be a misdirect on the part of his manager, though. It wouldn’t be the first time someone tried it.


    As much as I would like to see Caterham have a good line up next season. I would love them to keep Van der Garde, he did show some potential last season. I can in a way see why they would try and get new drivers though. I’m not sure what Kobayashi could do that Glock at Marussia or Trulli/Kovalainen/Petrov couldn’t though to get the car out the back apart from bringing money.


    Chilton confirmed. http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2014/01/11/marussia-confirm-chilton-2014/

    I’ve already elaborated on how I feel on this in the comments.

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