Honda F1 website

JULY 9, 2006

The market remains the same

The announcement that Juan Pablo Montoya is leaving Formula 1 to go to race in NASCAR does not change much in the F1 driver market. Montoya had talked to pretty much everyone and no-one was showing much in the way of interest as a new generation of F1 stars is now emerging and some of the older drivers have little chance of further employment.

The announcement is good news for Mark Webber as there were stories that Montoya was trying to convince Williams to take him. This never looked very likely but the news means that Webber is the only obvious choice for the team. McLaren is expected to take either Kimi Raikkonen or Lewis Hamilton, although the team is going through the process of checking out Gary Paffett to decide whether he is a better bet than Hamilton. We would expect to see Hamilton starting to test for the team in September as soon as the GP2 series is over.