Antonio Giovinazzi will remain part of Alfa Romeo Racing’s driving line-up for a second season to contest the 2020 Formula 1 World Championship.
Despite an arguably underwhelming rookie season where he has been outscored by teammate Kimi Räikkönen 31 points to four, the Italian keeps his seat thanks to the influence of engine partner Ferrari which has an influence over deciding one of its race seats in the agreement it struck with Sauber Motorsport which runs the team.
Giovinazzi, a long-term Ferrari academy and test driver, joined the squad’s line-up in 2019 as the replacement Räikkönen who was moved aside for the Ferrari-bound Charles Leclerc.
“I am very happy to be staying with the team for 2020,” said Giovinazzi, whose re-signing was confirmed on the Monday after the United States Grand Prix in which he finished fourteenth.
“I am grateful for the incredible level of support I received in my first full season in Formula One: everyone in the team has stuck by my side since I joined and I am really looking forward to continuing our journey together.
“We learned a lot this year and I am confident we can make a big step forward next season. I won’t be a rookie anymore so there won’t be any excuses for me: I want to be competitive right from the start of the championship and repay the confidence the team has shown in me.”
Frédéric Vasseur, Team Principal of Alfa Romeo Racing and CEO of Sauber Motorsport AG added: “Antonio has done really well this year and I am extremely pleased to be able to confirm he will stay with Alfa Romeo Racing for 2020.
“The way he has integrated into the team and has consistently improved throughout his first full season in the sport are very promising and we cannot wait to unlock his full potential as we continue to work together. Antonio has emerged as a very quick driver, even alongside as tough a benchmark as Kimi, and we expect him to develop even further as his experience grows.
“His technical feedback, work ethics and positive approach will help us continue to push our team forward, and so will the consistency of an unchanged line-up for next season.”
Giovinazzi’s re-signing closes the door on Nico Hülkenberg’s slim chances of remaining in Formula 1 next season. The German, ousted from Renault in favour of Esteban Ocon, failed to get the Haas F1 Team to meet his retainer demands and has already indicated he has no desire to race for F1 backmarkers Williams with whom he made his F1 debut in 2010.
|2020 Formula 1 World Championship – Provisional Entry List (to-date)|
|Mercedes-AMG Petronas||Lewis Hamilton||Valtteri Bottas|
|Scuderia Ferrari||Sebastian Vettel||Charles Leclerc|
|Red Bull Racing||Max Verstappen||TBA|
|McLaren Renault||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Lando Norris|
|Renault F1 Team||Daniel Ricciardo||Esteban Ocon|
|Racing Point BWT Mercedes||Sergio Pérez||Lance Stroll|
|Scuderia Alpha Tauri||TBA||TBA|
|Alfa Romeo Racing||Kimi Räikkönen||Antonio Giovinazzi|
|Haas F1 Team
||Kevin Magnussen||Romain Grosjean|
|Williams Racing||George Russell||TBA|
Images via Alfa Romeo Racing