The starting grid of the World Championship F1 in 2020 is taking shape a little more after the announcement Thursday of maintaining the French Romain Grosjean and Denmark's Kevin Magnussen at Haas and the departure of the Polish Robert Kubica at Williams.
The American team, first, had promised a verdict before the Singapore Grand Prix, which begins Friday. She has kept her word by confirming her current pair of pilots.
Haas makes the choice of continuity and "experience", in the words of the "main team" Guenther Steiner, rather than replacing Grosjean by the German Nico Hulkenberg, whose contract with Renault is coming to an end.
The 33-year-old Frenchman and eight full F1 seasons since 2012 (plus seven GPs in 2009), and the 26-year-old Danish and five F1 seasons since 2014, joined the team in 2016 (his debut year) and 2017 respectively.
Kubica will leave Williams at the end of the season, just one year after returning to F1 as a regular.
Victim in February 2011 of a serious accident in rally that left him handicapped in the right arm, the Pole had to stop his promising career in F1, before starting in 2017 his return to the category queen with tests with Renault then Williams, of which he was pilot of reserve and development in 2018.
Canada's Nicholas Latifi, currently in F2 and test driver for the British team, is expected to replace the Pole alongside Britain's George Russell.
Few teams have yet to confirm their drivers for next season.
The future of the Italian Antonio Giovinazzi at Alfa Romeo Racing has not yet been decided, while Finland's Kimi Räikkönen still has one year of contract.
It also remains to be seen who of Alexander Albon of Thailand, of the Russian Daniil Kvyat or French Pierre Gasly will accompany the Dutchman Max Verstappen at Red Bull and who will run for the sister team Toro Rosso.
Promoted at Red Bull in favor of Gasly during the summer break, Albon has until the last GP of the season in Abu Dhabi (29 November-1 December) to prove himself.
The paddock also wonders if Hülkenberg will be able to recover.
After many reshuffles on the grid in early 2019, 2020 brings to the table a major change for the time being: the arrival at Renault of the French driver Esteban Ocon, until then pilot of the Mercedes sector, to accompany the Australian Daniel Ricciardo.
Many stables will keep the same duets. This is the case of Mercedes (Hamilton-Bottas), Ferrari (Vettel-Leclerc), McLaren (Sainz Jr-Norris), Racing Point (Stroll-Perez) and therefore Haas (Grosjean-Magnussen).
© 2019 AFP