Carlos Sainz “deserves a top seat” – Toto Wolff

Jaden Diaz

Carlos Sainz was once seen as a legitimate option to join Red Bull or Mercedes next season. Unfortunately for the Spaniard, both these routes are off the table. Toto Wolff, team principal of the Silver Arrows, explains why Sainz is no longer on their shortlist for 2025.

Only a few months ago, all the momentum in the market seemed to be with Carlos Sainz. He secured the first non-Red Bull victory of the season, having been the only driver in 2023 to win a race outside of the Austrian team.

In more general terms, Sainz can be credited with a very impressive head-to-head against teammate Charles Leclerc. Although the consensus is that Leclerc has slightly more pace than the Spaniard, the difference between them is relatively small.

This strong duo is partly why Ferrari are within touching distance of Red Bull in the Championship.

Wolff explains decision not to pursue Carlos Sainz

However, joining an established top team is no longer possible for the 29-year-old. Speaking to Sky Sports, Toto Wolff explained why Sainz will not join the Brackley-based team:

“I think, first of all, Carlos deserves a top seat. I mean, he’s done a fantastic job.


“But for us, we’ve embarked on a route now to say – ‘You know what, we want to reinvent ourselves a little bit going forward’.

“And Kimi Antonelli definitely plays a part in that.

“We haven’t taken the decision yet for next year, but we didn’t want to have Carlos wait as well.

“Because he needs to take the decisions for himself, and that’s just fair. But he’s doing a super job.”

This is not the only interview where Wolff has strongly indicated his intentions of fast-tracking Kimi Antonelli. Even if the Italian is not given an F1 contract for 2025, he is clearly seen as the future at Mercedes.

In this context, Sainz is unlikely to have been interested in being a temporary stop-gap.

The two teams currently seen as genuine contenders for his services, Williams and Audi, see the three-time race winner as an integral part of their long-term project. Sainz is expected to make a decision on his future relatively soon.