Honda website
Honda website

JULY 21, 2004

Will Fisichella go to Renault or to Williams?

Giancarlo Fisichella has a contract to stay at Sauber in 2005 but it does not look like he's going to. The Roman has emerged in recent days as a contender not only for a drive with the BMW Williams team but also as a possible signing with the Renault team. A deal with Williams is easier because Fisichella has a clause in his contract which allows him to leave Sauber if a Williams seat is offered to him. Having said that it seems that Renault also wants Fisichella to replace Jarno Trulli, who seems increasingly likely to move to Toyota. There is a school of thought that believes that Flavio Briatore is blocking Mark Webber's move to Williams unless Williams agrees to let Fisichella go to Renault. This may sound plausible but when all is said and done Webber is the master of his own destiny and can tell Briatore what he wants to do so the idea that Webber could be a lever for Renault to get Fisichella is not a strong a story as it sounds. Williams is certainly considering Fisichella but at the same time is not thought to be 100% convinced that signing the Roman is such a good idea and perhaps this will mean that Briatore will end up with Fisichella at Renault if he can work out a deal with Sauber.

If that happens the way will be opened for Sauber to shop around for a new driver and the Swiss team is believed to keen on getting a driver of David Coulthard's experience, although others are pushing for the drive.

The second Williams remains the biggest question and while Nick Heidfeld is a possibility, it could be that the team will go for BAR's test driver Anthony Davidson as a suitable foil for Webber, working on the long-established Williams principle of using the car to create the stars rather than buying in expensive driving talent.