Not-so-silly season

I love the silly season between the end of one year’s racing and the beginning of the next. Who’s going where, which drivers are changing teams, how that impacts on other free seats… there’s just something about the intrigue that gets me. It’s like the US presidential race, but actually interesting.

But sadly, this year’s silly season is a bit of a washout, as nearly all the teams have confirmed their drivers for next year. The only change is Sebastian Vettel’s move from Toro Rosso to Red Bull, and that’s pretty dull, really.

So it’s Lewis and Heikki at McLaren, Kimi and Felipe at Ferrari, Bob and Nick at BMW… and so on.

Which means the only piece of intrigue we’re left with is where Fernando Alonso will go for 2009.

Honda have been openly chasing him, and that’s why they’ve not re-signed either Jenson Button or Rubens Barrichello. But if Alonso did find himself in a Honda, which one would he replace?

Rubens seems like the most obvious choice, but would Jenson be happy following (er, partnering) the two-time world champ Alonso, or would he strop off?

If he did leave in a huff, his only option would be to go to STR or do a straight swap into one of the vacant Renault seats.

But likely as not, Fernando will stay where he is – Renault have at least got championship-winning form, whereas Honda do not – and so Button will get to stay put, clinging onto the power of dreams.

So the only places we have to discuss is who will be at STR, who will replace Rubens, and who’s going to partner Alonso. Because let’s face it, it’s not going to be Nelson Piquet Jnr…

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