Shock Favorite to Replace Hamilton at Mercedes
Carlos Sainz Jr. is the bookmakers’ favorite to replace Hamilton at Mercedes when the seven-time world champion leaves for Ferrari after the 2024 season. Hamilton signed a two-year extension with Mercedes last August but has exercised an option to terminate after one year. He will partner Charles Leclerc at Ferrari on a deal worth around $100 million per year.
Hamilton’s Ferrari Deal
On Thursday, news broke that the 39-year-old Hamilton will leave Mercedes after 11 years and join Ferrari beginning in 2025. He endured disappointing 2022 and 2023 campaigns with Mercedes. But the six Formula One world championships he won make this one of the biggest driver transfers ever. According to the Italian outlet Formu1a.uno, Hamilton will earn around $100 million per year at Ferrari in salary, sponsors, image rights, bonuses and more. He will replace Carlos Sainz, who said about his Ferrari departure: “We still have a long season ahead of us, and I will give my absolute best for Ferrari.”
What about Verstappen?
Surprisingly absent from the odds is reigning two-time world champion Max Verstappen. His Red Bull contract runs through 2028, but it contains options to leave early. Verstappen dominated 2022 and 2023 in his Red Bull. If he wants a new challenge or thinks Mercedes provides a better championship opportunity long-term, he could attempt an exit. The Dutchman staying put still seems the most likely outcome. But it’s interesting that bookmakers didn’t even give him odds. Perhaps an under-the-table negotiation with Mercedes is secretly brewing.
Get in on the Action
With the driver drama unfolding in Formula One, fans in North Carolina can use the FanDuel North Carolina bonus code to wager on Sainz or Albon as Hamilton’s replacement. The FanDuel North Carolina bonus code unlocks a $100 free bet bonus for new sign-ups when sports betting launches in the state. Whether it’s betting on who will drive Hamilton’s Mercedes or on race winners each week, the FanDuel welcome offer gives bettors extra action.
The Next Chapter
Hamilton’s joining Ferrari closes his chapter with Mercedes, which featured six driver titles and eight constructor crowns. But the Silver Arrows aim to continue their success. Identifying his replacement is crucial, whether it be Sainz, Albon, or even Verstappen. Fans eagerly await what’s next in this unfolding drama. Those in North Carolina can use a FanDuel promo code to wager on Sainz or Albon inheriting Hamilton’s seat. Sports betting recently launched in North Carolina, and FanDuel offers a $100 bonus for new sign-ups. As the driver dominoes fall, bettors can capitalize on the latest F1 odds.
Sainz Favorite for Mercedes Seat
Sainz’s comment has fueled speculation over where he might end up next. Sportsbooks like Fanduel have made him the 6/4 favorite to replace Hamilton at Mercedes. Alex Albon has 2/1 odds to leave Williams for Mercedes. Other potential candidates include Fernando Alonso (5/1), Daniel Ricciardo (8/1), and Esteban Ocon (16/1). The 17-year-old sensation Kimi Antonelli has 25/1 odds. Mercedes needs an experienced driver to replace Hamilton’s production. Sainz seems the ideal fit after bringing Ferrari their only 2023 Grand Prix win so far. His talent and hunger for a championship could motivate Mercedes’ return to prominence.
Albon also looks well-positioned to step up. The London-born Thai finished an impressive fourth in the 2023 Australian Grand Prix, proving Williams’ car competitiveness and his growth as a driver. Albon achieved his first career podium there last year. He piloted well despite limited practice time after appendicitis. If Albon keeps progressing, Mercedes could see him as their future and snag him before other teams do.