2018 Driver market heats up
With Mercedes sticking to the Hamilton and Bottas line-up, the announcement has had a knock-on effect on the driver's market. What happens next seems to depend on a few key players - Daniel Ricciardo and Lance Stroll.
At the top end of the field Ricciardo is setting the pace. Ricciardo is almost certain to be retained by Red Bull, but until then, Carlos Sainz is unable to move. Sainz is loaned to Renault and has to be ready for the Red Bull call-up.
If and when that confirmation comes, it may not mean a second season at Renault for Sainz. Instead it might be a move to Woking based McLaren.
With McLaren open to other drivers , a all Spanish driver line-up is possible, and would be special to see as Sainz fully transition from holding Fernando Alonzo as an idol to team-mate.
At Ferrari, chatter ahead of the unfortunate passing of Sergio Machionne, was a decision in favour of Charles Leclerc, but the appointment of Louis Camilleri, may cast doubt on any change to their established driver line-up of Vettel/Raikkonen.
Leclerc has proven himself in his first season, but so have others that have not had a successful second, whilst Ferrari know what to expect from Raikkonen at a time of uncertainty.
If Leclerc does not find a way into the stables next season, then US team Haas might be a potential new home.
What would we have without speculation? A pretty dry paddock that's what. Making the midfield gossip worthy is the chatter that Williams driver Lance Stroll may be on the way to Force India.
Stroll Sr has apparently purchased the cash strapped team to save it from bankruptcy and of course that his son will be onboard to pilot the team from the front-line.
With Lance in it does mean a move for Esteban Ocon to Renault or possibly McLaren.
All this shuffling is just slightly more confusing that the coupling situation on Love Island.
Whats for certain is all the guess work and hot hunches in nothing until the ink is dry and the real announcements come.