2007 F1 World Championship title holder Kimi Raikkonen will not be the only driver set to leave Alfa Romeo at the end of the 2021 season as Antonio Giovinazzi reportedly will also lose his seat with the team.
41 year-old Raikkonen made an announcement on Wednesday that the 2021 F1 season would be his last in Formula 1 and it was his time to retire.
“This is it, this will be my last season in Formula 1,” the Finn wrote on Instagram. “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.”
Kimi Raikkonen however, will not be the only driver bidding farewell to Alfa Romeo as reports indicate that its more likely for Giovinazzi to lose his seat with the team as well. This comes despite the Italian trying to match up his performance with Raikkonen in the 2021 F1 season by ranking a point or two ahead but has never had a chance to appear in the lime light.
Antonio Giovinazzi was placed in Alfa Romeo by Scuderia Ferrari back in 2019 and it was again their decision for him to continue with their customer team for 2020 and 2021 season so far.
For 2022 season however, Alfa Romeo has stated that their driver line up will a hundred percent their decision.
“The team is fully responsible for the driver choice, we need time to discuss everything and make a decision and we are not in a rush,” Alfa Romeo team boss Frederic Vasseur insisted.
Reports indicate that Antonio Giovinazzi is more likely to be replaced by Formula E champion Nyck de Vries or Sauber junior driver Theo Pourchaire.
For Kimi Raikkonen’s seat, it is said Valtteri Bottas will be replacing him as George Russell takes the Finn’s Mercedes seat. This comes as Vasseur had stated back in July that there is no need for the team to retain any of the 2021 drivers for the next 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.”