Because time is running out for Sainz now that Alonso has extended his contract with Aston Martin

Because time is running out for Sainz now that Alonso has extended his contract with Aston Martin

Fernando Alonso recently extended his contract with the Aston Martin Formula 1 team for several years, meaning that the big name has disappeared from the driver market. This means that time is running out for Carlos Sainz, but he is not the only driver affected by the new contract of the two-time world champion.

Until recently, Fernando Alonso had a contract that tied him to Aston Martin until the end of 2024. Although the 42-year-old driver has stated several times in recent months that he wants to extend his employment with the British, his future seemed uncertain until recently. Due to Lewis Hamilton’s departure to Ferrari, Mercedes has a seat for the 2025 season, while Red Bull Racing has yet to sign Max Verstappen’s teammate on paper. Sergio Pérez’s contract expires at the end of this season.

Alonso’s long-term contract after flirting

And since he is a cunning fox, Alonso was able to make the most of those opportunities in the top two teams. The two-time world champion has been racing for Mercedes and Red Bull regularly in recent weeks, with the champions receiving plaudits. Whether it caused the big bosses at Aston Martin to put in a quick deal with sweaty hands is still a matter of speculation, but Alonso has at least managed to get the deal he dreamed of out of the fire. The driver from Oviedo will remain behind the wheel until at least the end of 2026, but his contract will last longer. Whether this will be as a driver or in another role within the team from 2027, both sides can agree later.

Time is running out for Sainz

This means that a big name has disappeared from the driver market, while an attractive position in Aston Martin has also been taken online. And that’s not necessarily good news for Carlos Sainz. The Spaniard is in good form this season, but is still out of a job in 2025. The 29-year-old driver has to make room at Ferrari for the arrival of seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton, and is therefore looking for another seat. And now that Aston Martin is no longer a possibility, time is running out. While there once seemed to be plenty of options for the three-time race winner, these have now begun to dwindle.

The chances on the top teams seem slim

Sainz’s preference will undoubtedly be for a top team, but he doesn’t seem to have many opportunities anymore. Although rumors are rife that Sainz is on his way to Mercedes, team boss Toto Wolff has now said that Mercedes youngster Andrea Kimi Antonelli is at the top of his priority list. The Austrian wants to put the 17-year-old Formula 2 driver next to George Russell in 2025 if possible. However, the program still has some limitations. Antonelli is currently driving his first season in Formula 2, but has yet to live up to his fast-acquired hero status.

Red Bull racing is also possible on paper. Sainz grew up in the Red Bull family and has now shown that he deserves a top team in terms of performance. But there is also bad news for Sainz in this area. At the moment Sergio Pérez is playing the way Red Bull wants it to be, and the team also has several options in the form of Daniel Ricciardo, Yuki Tsunoda and Liam Lawson, if they don’t want to extend the Mexican Grand Prix. Then the question remains when this decision will be made, because one thing that Sainz will definitely not want to do is wait until the end of the season.

Audi seems like a good possibility

McLaren will have Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri in the coming years, after which the jump to midfield and full-back will be made soon. The most obvious and safe choice for Sainz then seems to be Sauber, which is currently campaigning under the Stake F1 name. However, Sauber will be taken over by Audi in 2026, and the German manufacturer has big plans for the Formula 1 team. Being brought in as a leader can certainly sound convincing. However, it is still dangerous if Sauber will be able to play immediately from 2026. In addition, Sainz will have to close the 2025 class, and Stake F1 is currently a regular customer at the back.

Bad news for Tsunoda

The extension of Alonso’s contract does not only affect Sainz. Yuki Tsunoda’s dream place has also been swept off the table. Despite the Japanese doing well this season, the future of Red Bull Racing looks unlikely, making Aston Martin a very attractive option. Lawrence Stroll’s team will team up with Japanese motorcycle manufacturer Honda from 2026, which Tsunoda has been using for years.

The last chance for a Red Bull Championship seat?

It is now more important than ever for Tsunoda, 23, to show that he deserves a place alongside Verstappen. Also because his years with the sister team are starting to count. Currently, he is doing well this season with seven points in four races, while his teammate Ricciardo’s tally is still zero. As mentioned, Pérez is currently performing exactly as Red Bull Racing would like to see. Earlier this month, the 34-year-old veteran said that he expects to have clarity on his future within a month, which seems to indicate that something is already happening there.