Rumors swirling around Sainz Jr. future (3rd Update)

UPDATE (GMM) Carlos Sainz and Toro Rosso have rejected the latest speculation about the Spaniard's future in F1.

Although the energy drink company recently took up the 2017 option on Sainz's contract, many suggested it occurred suspiciously early in the season.

It triggered rumors in the Spanish press that Red Bull might in fact not place keep the 21-year-old at Toro Rosso next year, but instead trade him with the Renault works team in exchange for cheaper engines.

"Am I a currency now?" Sainz was quoted by Speed Week when asked about the rumors at Silverstone, adding that such a deal would be "strange".

Toro Rosso team boss Franz Tost agreed, declaring: "This is a completely groundless rumor which I can summarize in two words — utter nonsense."

07/04/16 (GMM) Even though team owner Red Bull has taken up its option on Toro Rosso driver Carlos Sainz Jr, Rumors continue to swirl around the impressive young Spaniard.

Formerly comparable to the teen sensation Max Verstappen at the Faenza team, 21-year-old Sainz was being linked with Renault and even Ferrari prior to Red Bull declaring that he has been contractually retained for 2017.

"We are very happy that Carlos is with us again next year," team boss Franz Tost told El Mundo Deportivo.

"The future looks very good for him because I am convinced that next year with a Renault engine and Red Bull technology, we will have a competitive car," he added.

As for the continuing Renault and Ferrari Rumors, one suggestion is that Red Bull decided to take up its 2017 option on Sainz so early so that interested teams would need to pay dearly to buy him out of his contract.

Tost said: "Carlos has a contract with Red Bull. If they extended it early, it is a way to make the team stay focused on the job."

Asked specifically about Renault and Ferrari's rumored interest, Tost added: "I know nothing about the interest of other teams. Red Bull has exercised the option in order to keep him."

Sainz's friend Fernando Alonso was asked in Austria if he thinks his young countryman is ready for a works team like Renault or Ferrari, and he answered: "Yes, probably yes.

"The second part of the question is whether he wants to go to those teams," Alonso is quoted by AS sports newspaper.

"First of all I am happy for him because he will have at least three years in formula one and that's very good in terms of continuity," the former world champion added.

"I think Red Bull has made a good decision because he is a great driver. For Ferrari, I think from May to September there are always Rumors and every driver seems to be on the list," said Alonso.

06/23/16

Carlos Sainz Jr. too good to be stuck on a 'B' team
Carlos Sainz Jr. too good to be stuck on a 'B' team

(GMM) There could be more than meets the eye to the re-signing by Red Bull of Carlos Sainz Jr. for 2017.

Reports in recent days, backed by comments by Toro Rosso chief Franz Tost and Red Bull's Christian Horner, have suggested the energy drink brand will definitely take up the one-year option in 21-year-old Spaniard Sainz's contract.

Those reports were initially interpreted as a rejoinder to speculation that Renault is eyeing Sainz as a potential race driver for the French works team for 2017.

But Marca, a Spanish sports daily, thinks Sainz is still in the frame at Renault. Actually, the newspaper said a deal between Sainz and Renault could be formalized within two races.

The current negotiations, Marca claims, are between Renault and Red Bull.

Currently, Renault supplies customer engines to Red Bull that the team rebrands as Tag-Heuer. The report suggested selling Sainz to Renault could be part of a deal to improve the engine deal terms.

Marca said Renault boss Frederic Vasseur met Red Bull's Dr Helmut Marko in Baku.

Marko admitted in an interview with Brazil's Globo that other teams have expressed interest in Sainz.

"He has a contract with us," he said. "The best option is to keep working as he has done with STR, keep developing with the team and become even more competitive next year."

As for Renault, Marko insisted he is happy with Red Bull's engine supplier.

"In 2015 I was not smiling because we had no chance, and mostly not because of us," he said.

"Now Renault is giving us a good engine, we will soon have an even better version and – most importantly – a completely new engine for 2017.

"I am sure that we will fight for the title," Marko added.

Carlos Sainz Jr

06/02/16 (GMM) Carlos Sainz Jr. has dismissed talk he could be F1's next Ferrari driver as "nothing but rumors".

With Kimi Raikkonen under fire for a poor outing at Monaco and the Finn's contract expiring, Spaniard Sainz is among those who have been mentioned as a potential replacement.

But the 21-year-old, under long-term contract to Red Bull and driving for the energy drink company's junior squad Toro Rosso, said: "They are nothing but rumors.

"It is not bad because it means that people are taking me seriously, but it is nothing important because it's baseless.

"I have to keep working, doing what I'm doing and the opportunity will come, I hope with Red Bull," Sainz said at an event where he was named as an ambassador to a foundation in memory of Maria de Villota.

Leave a Reply