Kimi Raikkonen is not the only Alfa Romeo driver leaving the team at the end of this season with Antonio Giovinazzi reportedly losing his seat.
Raikkonen announced on Wednesday that this year’s championship would be his last in Formula 1, the Finn saying it is time to retire.
“This is it,” he wrote on Instagram. “This will be my last season in Formula 1.
“This is a decision I did during last winter. It was not an easy decision but after this season it is time for new things.”
The Finn, though, may not be the only 2021 Alfa Romeo driver saying farewell to the team, and potentially to Formula 1.
According to Auto Motor und Sport, ‘it is very likely that Giovinazzi will lose his place’ as well.
Although the Italian has got the better of Raikkonen in their qualifying head-to-head this season and only trails the 2007 World Champion by one point to two, Giovinazzi has by no means set the stage alight.
Placed at the Ferrari-powered Alfa Romeo team by the Scuderia in 2019, it was Ferrari’s decision to continue with him in 2020 and again this season.
Next year, though, Alfa Romeo say their line up is 100 percent their decision.
“The team is fully responsible for the driver choice,” said team boss Fred Vasseur insisted.
“We need time to discuss everything and make a decision and we are not in a rush.”
AMuS added that Sauber ‘youngster Theo Pourchaire and Formula E World Champion Nyck de Vries’ are the two drivers in line to replace Giovinazzi.
Who wouldn't love to see them sing together? 🎤 pic.twitter.com/sakl4Hc9eZ
— Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN (@alfaromeoracing) September 1, 2021
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As for the driver expected to replace Raikkonen, that is said to be Valtteri Bottas with the Finn moving to Alfa Romeo and George Russell taking his Mercedes seat.
Vasseur already stated back in July that he does not believe it is important that Alfa Romeo retain at least one of their 2021 drivers heading into the 2022 season.
“It could be a point, but it’s not necessary,” Vasseur said.
“You can say that it’s always good to have a kind of continuity into the team because at least you have a reference and you can compare with the feeling of the previous year and blah blah, blah.
“Let’s see. We’ll do the choice when it will be the right time to do it. We could keep the same line-up or we could change. Everything is open.”
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