Daniel Ricciardo signing with Renault is proving to have a very strong effect on the current Formula 1 landscape, as other drivers will now be forced to move to perhaps, unfamiliar places.
Take Carlos Sainz Jr for example, currently under contract with Toro Rosso but on loan at Renault. Sainz will need to go now that Ricciardo is coming in 2019, when he will line up alongside Nico Hulkenberg.
While some might think that a door could open for Sainz to move to Red Bull, a recent report by Autsport points to current Toro Rosso driver Pierre Gasly as the early favorite to climb the ladder. Also, Sainz apparently has no intention to return to Toro Rosso.
This is why word started circulating with regards to the Spaniard joining McLaren come next year, in place of Fernando Alonso, who has announced his retirement from Formula 1. Might have he preferred Red Bull? It’s possible. Yet, at the moment, all signs point to Max Verstappen pairing up with Pierre Gasly moving forward.
Gasly has clearly out-raced his teammate at Toro Rosso this year, Brendon Hartley, having already secured 26 points, compared to the latter’s 2.
The young Frenchman is in fact one of F1’s brightest young stars, together with Sauber’s Charles Leclerc and Force India’s Esteban Ocon. So it should be quite fun seeing him paired up with Max Verstappen, if it does happen.