Late August is the perfect time of year for rumors of massive musical chairs-level changes happening to the driver lineups in pretty much every motorsport series across the board. Most of this stuff doesn’t end up happening, but that doesn’t mean we’re not all going to speculate until our brains are sore. And I want to know what you’re hoping is true and what you’re hoping is pure bullshit.
Right now, there’s a pretty hefty rumor floating around that Esteban Ocon will be replacing Nico Hulkenberg at Renault’s Formula One team (this rumor is my personal favorite—I do not understand all the hype around Hulkenberg and feel it is time for someone else to give ‘er a go). However, Hulkenberg might be heading over to Haas to replace a seemingly on-the-out Romain Grosjean. There’s also the whole ‘Valtteri Bottas might not be at Mercedes next year’ rumor, which doesn’t quite make sense given that there’s no one immediately ready to take his seat—but Toto Wolff is already planning for a “soft landing” for Bottas. Ouch.
Then we’ve got IndyCar. Now that Alexander Rossi has re-signed with Andretti, we’ve lost some of the fun of speculation—but there’s still plenty to wonder about. Is Helio Castroneves coming back? Is someone (Will Power) getting kicked out of Penske? After a few stellar runs at Carlin, will someone have a full-time seat ready for Conor Daly? And how many eyes have been locked onto Santino Ferrucci after his impressive drives this year at Dale Coyne? Who the hell is also going to McLaren???
And that’s not even touching NASCAR, a series that I will admit I have not paid as much attention to as I should but largely only because there are approximately five million drivers and races every weekend and Cup drivers in Xfinity and oh god it’s all happening all the time.
This is your chance, fellow race fans. Speculate away.