What does Alonso-Aston deal mean for Sainz in the 2025 F1 market?

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By 5mustsee.com

Fernando Alonso‘s choice to remain with Aston Martin until 2026 has limited options for Spanish driver Carlos Sainz, who is now the most sought-after free agent in Formula One following the announcement that Lewis Hamilton will take his spot at Ferrari in 2025.

Despite being one of F1’s most successful drivers, Sainz has been left without a seat for next season. Some have even questioned if Ferrari made the right choice in favoring teammate Charles Leclerc over him.

Sainz had shown interest in Aston Martin as a potential option. The team’s owner Lawrence Stroll has big plans to transform the team into championship contenders in the coming years. Sainz has demonstrated his skill in the past seasons and is deserving of a competitive car that could challenge for the title, which Aston Martin aims to provide in 2026 with Honda engines.

However, Stroll’s decision to retain his son Lance Stroll in the team has limited their options and prevented the formation of a potentially strong team with Sainz and Alonso. With Aston Martin no longer an option, Sainz’s choices have narrowed down to a few, making his next move unclear at this point.

Red Bull

Joining Red Bull would be a significant opportunity for any driver given their current dominance in F1. Sainz has attracted Red Bull’s attention, especially after his victory at the Australian Grand Prix. Despite previously being let go by the Red Bull program without getting a chance in the senior team, Sainz is open to the prospect.

Teaming up with Max Verstappen at Red Bull may pose challenges as the team revolves around Verstappen, who has established himself as a force in F1. Nevertheless, Sainz has proven his abilities at Ferrari and is prepared to step up when needed.

The possibility of Verstappen leaving Red Bull had sparked interest in Sainz potentially joining the team. However, recent developments indicate that Red Bull is focusing on renewing Sergio Pérez’s contract, making Sainz’s path to Red Bull less certain. Pérez’s solid performances and compatibility with the team make him a preferred choice, leaving Sainz in a difficult position if he were to consider joining Red Bull.


While not the most appealing choice on the surface due to their lackluster recent performances, Sauber is gearing up for the Audi project starting in 2026. The current drivers, Valtteri Bottas and Zhou Guanyu, are not guaranteed to stay with the team next season, opening up an opportunity for Sainz to potentially make a move.

Despite concerns about Sauber’s future under Audi’s ownership, Sainz has taken notice of Audi’s commitment to revamping the team. Transitioning to a new era with Audi could present challenges for Sauber, but Sainz might find an interesting prospect in being part of this project.

Audi has increased its investment in the Sauber Formula 1 team to 75%, making it easier for them to consider joining Sauber in 2025 with a potential path to becoming a winning team by 2026. Audi has already made strides in building its F1 operation and appointed Andreas Seidl, who previously worked with Carlos Sainz at McLaren, as CEO. Despite Audi’s ambitions and racing pedigree, concerns remain about their competitiveness in the immediate future.

Audi’s interest in F1 was prompted by the sport’s upcoming engine regulations in 2026, and they are seeking a high-profile driver to lead their team into a new era. Carlos Sainz, a successful grand prix winner and a popular driver in F1, is seen as a suitable candidate due to his existing connections with Audi through his father’s involvement in the Dakar Rally.

On the other hand, Mercedes seems focused on nurturing their young talent, particularly Italian teenager Andrea Kimi Antonelli, which has limited Carlos Sainz’s options. Discussions between Mercedes and Fernando Alonso did take place, but they did not progress significantly. Mercedes was only interested in offering Alonso a one-year contract, while the driver preferred a multiyear deal offered by Aston Martin.

Antonelli, who is set to turn 18 soon, presents a risk for Mercedes, but the team sees potential in his candidacy. This strategy is partly influenced by past experiences, such as losing out on signing a young Verstappen to Red Bull in 2014. Despite external skepticism, Mercedes remains committed to investing in young drivers like Antonelli.

Meanwhile, Williams emerges as a potential option for Carlos Sainz, as the team aims to reestablish itself as a competitive force in F1. With uncertainties surrounding their current lineup, Sainz could provide Williams with a strong driver option to bolster their performance in the future. However, joining Williams would also pose uncertainties and challenges for Sainz.

In summary, while Audi and Mercedes have their respective strategies and priorities in driver selection, a potential move to Williams could offer Carlos Sainz another competitive opportunity in Formula 1.

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