F1 News Round-up #1

A general News round-up with detailed information on each News story since the New Year including Valterri Bottas moving to Mercedes so far the car launch dates.

16/01/17

Bottas finally joins Mercedes

Valtteri Bottas will replace retired world champion Nico Rosberg as Lewis Hamilton’s team-mate at Mercedes for 2017. Bottas has signed a one-year deal with the option for more, while Rosberg moves into an ambassadorial role.

In spite of this, Felipe Massa has suspended his retirement and will replace the departing Bottas at Williams once again to partner Lance Stroll. Pascal Wehrlein was the front runner in replacing Rosberg at Mercedes but Mercedes felt that Wehrlein was not ready for promotion. Wehrlein joins Sauber from Manor and will replace Felipe Nasr to partner Marcus Ericsson.

Manor enter Administration

Manor Racing have gone into administration and will collapse without new investment. Announced on the 6th of January, the team has just until the 20th of this month as a deadline for the teams survival. Manor finished 11th and last in the Constructors championship in 2016 after being beaten by Sauber by 1 point. That position change in the penultimate race of the season has proved that the 10th place was crucial for Manor’s financial status. The amount of money that is between 10th and 11th places is astronomical and finishing in 10th place would not see Manor in this place.

If a new investor is not found in time, Manor can miss up to the first three races of the season before losing their rights to race in F1. The fourth race is the Russian GP.

Paddy Lowe leaves Mercedes

Paddy Lowe has left his role as Mercedes executive director to join Williams. While Mercedes hasn’t announced Valterri Bottas to join Lewis Hamilton it is expected that Lowe will join Williams soon, replacing Pat Symonds, who exited just before Christmas.

Mercedes, meanwhile, could replace Lowe with former Ferrari technical director James Allison. Allison left the Scuderia last July with his gardening leave period thought to last for 12 months.

Vasseur leaves Renault team principal role

Frederic Vasseur has left his position as boss of Renault’s Formula 1 team. The moves comes after months of claims by sources of a difficult relationship between Vasseur and Renault Sport managing director Cyril Abiteboul.

This has apparently upset new signing Nico Hulkenberg, who joins Renault from Force India for 2017. Vasseur, was named a key figure in signing Hulkenberg. Hulkenberg has driven for Vasseur back in GP2 when he won the title back in 2009.

Car launch dates so far

  • February 21: Renault
  • February 22: Force India
  • February 23: Mercedes
  • February 24: Ferrari and McLaren
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