Russian Grand Prix – Marcus Ericsson has conceded that he anticipated being replaced at Sauber when he heard the news of Kimi Raikkonen signing for 2019.
Over the course of the summer, Sauber confirmed that Kimi Raikkonen had signed a two-year deal with the team from 2019.
This effectively made the second Sauber seat a contest between Ericsson and Ferrari junior driver Antonio Giovinazzi, who had been Sauber’s test and reserve driver in 2018.
Earlier this week, Sauber announced that they had chosen Giovinazzi to partner Raikkonen in 2019, but kept Ericsson on as a “third driver and brand ambassador”.
The move to put Giovinazzi in the second seat effectively confirmed that the Raikkonen signing was a replacement for Ericsson, and not an allocation of the dedicated ‘Ferrari seat’ at Sauber.
Speaking for the first time about the driver changes, Ericsson admitted that he had doubts about his seat security when Raikkonen was confirmed at the team.
“I think when Kimi signed, I think that was bad news for me. I was still hoping, but then over the past weekend I got the information that Antonio had signed in the other car,” said Ericsson.
He added that whilst he’s happy to continue his association with the team, he and his management team are looking around for opportunities in other racing series.
“Me and my management were looking around a little bit, but we decided to continue with Sauber and the relationship there, which we think is important.
“I want to race still, I’m looking at different options on how to do that, looking at everything really, what I can do and in what series. It’s still early and still quite fresh news, so I need to look at my options but overall, of course, I would like to stay.
“My goal is still to come back to Formula One. I think for 2019 that’s not going to happen, but hopefully after that there will be possibilities to come back.”