10 F1 drivers who changed teams during a season

published on July 2, 2020

the Formula One driver market can be

volatile at any time but usually the

action involves people switching teams

between seasons that's not always the

case though sometimes things move on at

such pace that changes have to happen

while a season is still going on and

we've dug out ten examples of when these

moves happened which midseason switches

would make your list and who would be

your number one number 10 Giancarlo

Fisichella Force India to Ferrari 2009

Giancarlo Fisichella is days of driving

for a big team in f1 seemed well behind

him when he took a stunning unexpected

pole position for Force India at the

Belgian Grand Prix while he was unable

to convert that into victory finishing

second to Kimi räikkönen the performance

earned him a call-up to drive alongside

the fin at Ferrari for the rest of the

season Ferrari had initially brought in

test driver luca badoer to stand in for

the injured Felipe Massa but after two

hopeless outings in the admittedly

difficult ferrari f60 one italian was

dropped for another and Fisichella sawed

out the season fitty Keller also

struggled to get on with the car never

qualifying better than four team from

failing to score any points he

apologized to Ferrari at the end of the

season saying he'd not really shown his

worth and highlighted the difficulty in

getting the car to work over a single

lap his f1 career was over at this stage

but he has enjoyed a long and successful

career in GT racing with Ferrari in the

years since number nine Justin Wilson

Minardi to Jaguar 2003 Justin Wilson was

just 11 races into his rookie f1 season

with Minardi when Jaguar snapped him up

as a replacement to the underperforming

Antonio pizzonia once it had been able

to check the lanky Brit would fit into

his car Wilson retired from his first

three races with Jaguar but managed to

score a point next time out of

Indianapolis unfortunately would be the

only point of his career as Jaguar

decided to replace him with red bull

backed Christian clean for 2004 still

only being an f1 for one season and

managing to drive for two teams is an

achievement worth

of this list number 8 Carlos Sainz jr

Toro Rosso to Renault 2017 it would be

easy to flood this list with in-season

redbull driver swaps and one major

switch has made the cut higher up but

Carlos Sainz jr leaving Toro Rosso to

take Julian Palmer's place at Renault

was a Red Bull driver change with a

difference Sykes was into his third

season as a Toro so driver and wondering

if the call to move up with Red Bull was

ever going to come when Rena offered him

a step up the grid for 2018 the move was

announced as a loan from Red Bull and

the switch was brought forward to

include the final four races of 2017

when Renault ran out of patience with

parma science never got his shot with

Red Bull eventually been released

entirely to pursue a career at McLaren

when Pierre gastly was chosen to replace

Daniel Ricciardo for 2019 Sciences

performance is an orange earned him a

drive with Ferrari for 2021 number 7

Mika Salo

ba r2 Ferrari 1999 this is a slightly

quirky one as Mika Salo didn't move

directly from one team to another

he started 1999 on the sidelines after

losing his arrows drive a week before

the season but that set him up for a

memorable year as f1 super-sub solo made

three starts for BIR early in the year

filling in for the injured Ricardo Zonta

and taking the team's first race

finishes in a troubled debut campaign he

was retained by ba RS reserve driver

when Zonta returned a deal he then had

to buy himself out of when Michael

Schumacher broke his leg at the British

Grand Prix and Ferrari called on solo to

replace him

Salo famously gave up victory in the

german grand prix to help Eddie Irvine's

championship challenge and stood on the

podium again at Monza in front of the

tifosi in his pen ultimate start for the

team number six Jean Alesi procced

to jordan 2001 jean alesi was a jordan

driver at both ends of his f1 career he

won the F 3000 title with the team in

1989 alongside breaking into f1 with

Tyrell then retired in 2001 after

starting his final five races for Jordan

that came following a midseason move

from frost which was struggling

financially and would fold after the

2001 season

Jordan pounced for a Lacey when it

decided to drop the underperforming

heinz-harald Frentzen who Eddie Jordan

believed was struggling to deal with

Jarno Trulli qualifying pace there were

also concerns that a heavy crash in

Monaco had affected friends and more

than he was letting on Frentzen went to

Prost and a lacy sore out his 201 race

f1 career driving for the man that

helped him get his debut 12 years


number five Roberto Moreno euro Brent a

Benetton 1990 Roberto Moreno had failed

to qualify for 12 out of 14 races in

1990 with Euro brron when he got the

biggest chance of his f1 career with

Benetton Alessandro Nannini horrific

helicopter accident curtailed his f1

career with two races to go in 1990 and

Benetton opted to place Marino alongside

Nelson Piquet to create an all Brazilian

lineup remarkably Moreno finished second

to PK on his first start with Benetton

in the Japanese Grand Prix a result that

is often forgotten against the backdrop

of Ayrton Senna wiping out Alain Prost

at the start it was a phenomenal career

turnaround for Moreno in what was only

his ninth start in f1 from 34 attempts

he kept the drive for 1991 but lost it

in another famous driver swap with a

certain Michael Schumacher which you can

hear a lot more about in our crazy

contract stories video number 4 John

Surtees Ferrari to Cooper 1966

John Surtees is the only driver on this

list to win races for two teams in the

same season the 1964 world champion

split with Ferrari two races into 1966

when an already strained relationship

reached breaking point with a row over

who should start the LeMond 24 hours

thirties final Grand Prix for Ferrari

was a memorable victory at Spa that he

ranked as his best Drive and he

completed the campaign driving for

Cooper he was on the podium in every

race he finished over the rest of the


winning the finale in Mexico to clean

second in the championship years later

he would reflect that his falling-out

with Ferrari cost both sides at least a

couple of titles number three Yano truly

Renault to Toyota 2004 with firmly into

the territory of the remarkable stories

now and Jarno Trulli

2004 season fits that bill truly started

the year outperforming Fernando Alonso

at Renault and took his maiden f1

victory in Monaco making him the only

driver other than Michael Schumacher to

win one of the first 13 races that

season yet before the year was out he

was fired by Renault as the team felt

his performances were one of the key

reasons it fallen behind ba are in the

battle for second in the championship

Flavio Briatore he was not impressed

when truly was caught napping at the end

of the French Grand Prix and lost a

podium finish to Rubens Barrichello and

by the time of the Italian Grand Prix

the relationship had broken down

entirely truly completed his final race

for Renault at Monza without speaking on

the radio and after he was dismissed

Jacques Villeneuve came in for the final

three races truly immediately concluded

negotiations with Toyota for 2005

following his release and made an early

start with the team to the final two

races of 2004 truly is also high on our

list because this was the second time he

switched teams midseason in 1997 he

moved from Minardi to procced as a


after Olivier panis broke his legs in a

crash at the Canadian Grand Prix number

2 max Verstappen Toro Rosso to Red Bull

2016 max first happens swap with Daniel

kiveat in early 2016 had to place highly

on this

as it's the only example of a driver

switching teamed and winning first time

out for steppin capitalized on Mercedes

drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg

colliding on the opening lap at a

Spanish Grand Prix and having a better

strategy than teammate Daniel Ricciardo

to win on his debut for redbull but it

wasn't an easy win and he had to resist

pressure for 30 laps from the Ferrari of

Kimi räikkönen to take the first win of

his f1 career and justify Red Bulls

decision to somewhat harshly demote

kiveat so early in the season number 1

Johnny Herbert 1989 and 1994 herbert

doesn't top our list because of the

successes he had when he switched teams

but because he did it twice and on the

second occasion he managed to drive for

three teams in three consecutive races

in his debut season in 1989 herbert was

still suffering of his injuries from a

nasty formula 3000 crash at Brands Hatch

the year before he scored points first

time out in Brazil with Benetton but

after six races he was stood down having

failed to qualify for the Canadian Grand

Prix he returned later in the year to

make two appearances with terrell

filling in for jean alesi heard clashing

commitments on roots of the f3000 title

after making a handful of starts for

Lotus in 1990 and 91 Herbert joined the

team full-time from 92

staying on until it hit financial

trouble late in 1994 after a miserable

season as Lotus floundered before

folding herbert was able to get out of

his long-term contract before the end of

the year he switched to Lee GA for one

race at her eff then joined Benetton

next time out at Suzuka alongside

Michael Schumacher in the space of three

races herbert went from a team that was

about to die to one that was about to

win its first world championship and the

following season he won two races to

help Benetton – it's only Constructors

crown which drivers switching teams

midseason were your favorites over the

years let us know in the comments below

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