The Leclerc to Ferrari saga has stretched a little more than expected, as the young Sauber driver finds himself in the midst of a ‘Ferrari dilemma’.
According to reports in the last few days, Sergio Marchionne had already finalised a deal for Leclerc earlier this year, wherein, according to La Gazzetta dello Sport, Leclerc was going to have a contract worth $2 million in 2019 and $3 million in 2020.
However, following Marchionne’s death, all contractual negotiations had stalled as Ferrari was going through a massive change in their management personnel.
Now, while Marchionne was a fan of Leclerc, the new management wants to have some stability in their initial few seasons and feel Kimi needs to stay for a year with the team.
But the deal that was made for Leclerc by Marchionne will need to be respected and hence Ferrari find themselves in a massive fix.
In order to find a middle ground, Ferrari tried to convince Haas to sign Leclerc for a year, but Haas denied the offer(as per f1maximaal.nl)and hence Ferrari have almost run out of options.
Arrivabene has made a bizarre statement about Leclerc’s move to Ferrari and Kimi’s extension, saying that there is no correlation between the two. (unless Ferrari have decided to ditch Vettel)
“The extension of Raikkonen has nothing to do with it,” Arrivabene said while speaking about Leclerc’s move to Ferrari.
From the looks of it, Ferrari will have to announce the signing of Leclerc and the departure of Raikkonen, as per the initial deal made by Sergio Marchionne.
The major saving point could have been if Haas had agreed to a Leclerc deal but it seems like they have their own way to go about the driver market.