It’s probably fair to say that Sauber haven’t had the most exciting driver line-ups in recent years – remember the incredible pairing of Esteban Gutierrez and Adrian Sutil? What a thrill ride that was!
So with Felipe Nasr netting Sauber around $30 million with his 9th place finish in Brazil, of course it makes sense for them to confirm that Marcus Ericsson will continue with the team in 2017. Wait, what?
The two have actually been fairly evenly matched during their time as team mates, but Ericsson has been putting in some good performances lately, such as his drive to 11th in the Mexican Grand Prix. His most memorable moment came in Thailand however, when he crashed into a chicken whilst riding his bike.
With such big rule changes for next year and new ownership for the Sauber team some driver continuity is a bonus for such a small team. Now at the end of his third season in F1, 26-year-old Ericsson may not get the blood pumping like some of the other young drivers but has developed into a solid, consistent and perfectly competent midfield racer. According to team boss Monisha Kaltenborn he is “an important team player who understands how to work with the team and how to motivate everyone with his positive attitude.”
— Marcus Ericsson (@Ericsson_Marcus) November 21, 2016
The news leaves just three seats open for next year – Manor have yet to confirm any drivers, and the identity of Ericsson’s team mate is still unknown. Nasr is believed to be first in line to retain his drive but the extension of his contract is being held up due to sponsorship complications.
Is this the most exciting driver announcement since Michael Schumacher announced his return with Mercedes? We think it might be.