Sergio Perez jubilant after winning the Sakhir Grand Prix
Yesterday was just one week after Romain Grosjean’s fiery crash at Bahrain. With all that happened in Formula 1 since then, it seems as if more time than that has passed. After last week’s race, winner Lewis Hamilton tested positive for COVID-19 and missed yesterday’s race. George Russell, who drives for Williams, replaced Hamilton and did a superb job, only to be thwarted by a tire mix up. Sergio Perez led Racing Point to the team’s first double podium and his first win in Formula 1 in one of the most exciting Grand Prix in a long time. The race resembled an Indycar race at times.
In a Twitter video early Sunday, Grosjean told fans that he would not be in shape to drive in the season’s final race at Abu Dabi next weekend. Grosjean is not returning to Haas F1 and has no prospects in the series. Perez will not return to Racing Point and is out of a job after the Abu Dabi race. Where might the two end up? Indycar?
There has been speculation that Grosjean is in talks with A. J. Foyt and possibly another team about driving next year. Foyt is still seeking to fill the seat in the 4 car. I have not heard Perez mentioned in conjunction with an Indycar ride, but he would be a great addition to the series.
With Perez and Pato O’Ward both in Indycar, the case for the series to hold a race in Mexico in 2022 is much stronger. I think a Mexican race would be a strong draw. But who will Perez drive for?
As far as I know the following Indycar seats are open:
Foyt-1, possibly 2, but one of those will go to Dalton Kellett if he can fully fund it.
Carlin- possibly 1 and the oval portion of the 59
Carpenter- 1 road/street ride in the 20. Conor Daly might fill that role again unless he can find funding for a third Carpenter full time car.
My guesses right now? Grosjean to Foyt and Perez to Coyne. Pairing Sebastien Bourdais with another French driver who could learn from him just sounds like a good move.
Perez seems like the type of driver that is attractive to Coyne. Coyne tends to find drivers with little to no Indycar experience, and somehow manages to wring some success out of them. The key is funding, as it would be with Coyne’s second car.
Bottom Line: Two Formula 1 drivers need rides for 2021; Indycar has spots. Let’s see what happens.