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Ricciardo and Sargeant Identified as F1’s Most Vulnerable: The Battle to Retain Their Seats



The top two racers facing the threat of mid-season replacement in F1 have been pinpointed.

Daniel Ricciardo and Logan Sargeant are highlighted as the primary drivers facing the possibility of not securing their positions for the 2024 Formula 1 season.

According to Andrew Benson, the F1 correspondent for BBC Sport, Williams' Sargeant appears to be a driver who is nearing the end of his time in Formula 1.

Ricciardo, on the other hand, must enhance his results with Red Bull's affiliate team, RB, to avoid the possibility of being substituted by backup driver Liam Lawson during the current season.

Both racers are facing scrutiny following their challenging beginnings to the season, which has only seen six races so far.

During his Q&A session before the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, Benson was asked to identify the current drivers who are at the greatest risk of being replaced during the season.

"Benson noted that the major contenders in this case are Logan Sargeant from Williams and Daniel Ricciardo from Red Bull."

Sargeant appears to be a racer on the brink of concluding his Formula 1 career. Without significant improvements, the prevailing uncertainty is if his departure will occur mid-season or once the season wraps up.

It is rumored that Williams is eager to find a replacement for him before the season concludes, favoring Mercedes' rising star Andrea Kimi Antonelli, who is competing in Formula 2 for his inaugural season.

"However, at just 17 years old, Antonelli currently doesn't meet the requirements for the super licence necessary for all F1 drivers. High-ranking insiders spoke to BBC Sport, indicating that the likelihood of the Italian competing in F1 prior to turning 18 on August 25 is virtually nil."

"This implies that he might secure a spot with Williams before either the Dutch or Italian Grand Prix following the summer pause."

Nonetheless, the success of this approach also hinges on Mercedes' approach to driver selection, given that Williams is probably not interested in having Antonelli on board for just part of the season if he's going to join Mercedes in 2025. Therefore, if Antonelli ends up racing for Williams this season, it's expected that he would remain with them for the following season as well.

Ricciardo managed to alleviate some of the stress he was under with his impressive showing during the qualifying sprint in China, a feat he replicated in Miami. However, his overall performance still falls short when compared to his teammate, Yuki Tsunoda.

"He must make adjustments to avoid the possibility of Liam Lawson, the reserve driver, taking over his position during this season."

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