Silly Season Update: Alonso, Vettel and Hamilton to move

Future uncertain: Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel, and Lewis Hamilton

Future uncertain: Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel, and Lewis Hamilton

In the aftermath of a dramatic Belgian Grand Prix weekend the Silly Season hearsay is in full flight with reports emerging that three Formula 1 world champions (all disgruntled) are set to change teams for 2015. Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel all set to move?

Alonso got Spanish scribes into a frenzy when he popped into the Red Bull motorhome during the weekend at Spa-Francorchamps, apparently only to deliver a signed T-shirt to his former Renault race engineer Paul Monaghan for his son who is an avid Alonso fan.

Marca columnist Marco Canseco wrote that Alonso could have avoided the visit to the Red Bull camp, and thus avoiding the inevitable speculation that it caused, by sending a messenger with the T-shirt, but instead opted to do it himself and thus sending out a signal that he is his own man and can come and go as he pleases.

Should Vettel decide to jump ship to McLaren or Ferrari (as described below) then the Red Bull option would be highly attractive to both Alonso and the world champion team.

Lewis Hamilton with Fernando Alonso could swap seats

Lewis Hamilton with Fernando Alonso could swap seats

Meanwhile it has been widely reported that Ron Dennis has been openly courting Alonso for some months, as McLaren seek to bolster their line-up with a superstar driver ahead of their renewed Honda partnership which kicks of in 2015. Word is that the Japanese giants are insisting on a top line driver to spearhead the project.

Several reports are doing the rounds suggesting that McLaren will not announce their 2015 drivers until Alonso makes a decision on his future.

McLaren’s Eric Boullier told media, “We are working on the strategy for the driver line-up for the next years. For me it’s important to say years because we are looking for three years and maybe five years.”

Hamilton’s situation at Mercedes, with the increasingly volatile Formula 1 world title duel with teammate Nico Rosberg as a backdrop, is starting to look increasingly fragile and speculation is mounting (even before the collision in Belgium) that the 2008 F1 world champion could well be looking around for alternative options.”

Ferrari sporting director Massimo Rivola with Sebastian Vettel at Spa

Ferrari sporting director Massimo Rivola with Sebastian Vettel at Spa

The Hamilton versus Rosberg conflict is becoming increasingly unmanageable, with many believing that the point of no return has been crossed and that one of the two will depart the team come the end of the season, and most likely the one that does not win the title will walk out.

Thus Hamilton is invariably being linked to a return to McLaren, but a Ferrari deal (should Alonso depart Maranello) would be a highly attractive option for the Briton, his ambitious management team and the Italian squad.

Recently we reported here>>> that Vettel and Adrian Newey are coveted by McLaren, urged on by Honda. However another possible scenario being touted about in Italy suggesting that Alonso’s departure would trigger a massive financial offer by Ferrari to lure both Vettel and Newey to Maranello.

For some years now Vettel has flirted with the idea of driving for Ferrari, and it is known that recently the German bought his father Norbert a Ferrari California, not an Infiniti…

It is expected that Sebastian Vettel  will drive for Ferrari sometime in his F1 career

It is expected that Sebastian Vettel will drive for Ferrari sometime in his F1 career

But more seriously, Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo has had Vettel in his sights for some time and once predicted, “Sebastian is fast, intelligent and young. He will drive a red car sooner or later.”

But Red Bull’s billionaire owner Dietrich Mateschits countered around the same time, “Seb wants to drive for Ferrari some day. We will make it as difficult a decision for him as possible.”

But since then things have changed with Daniel Ricciardo elevating himself to the blue eyed boy of the Red Bull team with three victories against the odds in his maiden season with the Milton Keynes outfit, while an increasingly frustrated Vettel has struggled with the new era V6 technology and has yet to win with turbo power.

Three of the sport’s biggest players are currently in fragile situations within their respective teams, and perhaps things will sort themselves out but as it stands it appears there will be a major revolution in the Formula 1 driver market for the 2015 season. (GP247)