Williams boss comments on risk of Latifi getting immediately fired, Renault engine deal

Nicholas Latifi's performances in 2022 have left him in danger of being dropped by Williams at the end of the season or even earlier.

Williams CEO and team principal Jost Capito continues to keep his cards close to his chest regarding the possible signing of Oscar Piastri and the subsequent Renault engine deal.

Nicholas Latifi has been out-qualified by Alex Albon at every race so far this season including the Imola sprint race, and a combination of poor form and crashes have put his Formula 1 tenure at risk.

The Canadian is yet to score a point this season while his 26-year-old team-mate has twice been in the top 10 at the chequered flag, so he is a man under pressure to pick up his performances at present.

Alpine reserve Piastri is looking for a way into the pinnacle of motorsport having won the Formula 2 championship in dominant fashion last year, and it is thought that the French team will look to loan him to Williams next year or even before.

Jenson Button and Williams boss Jost Capito.v1

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A driver like him is always going to be a fascinating prospect for any team in search of a driver.

“Oscar is interesting for everyone who has a free place, there is no question about it,” conceded Capito.

With rumours emerging that Latifi could be replaced by the Australian after his home race this weekend, Capito insisted that “that’s definitely not the case.”

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Because Williams would essentially be doing Alpine a favour by running the Renault-powered side’s reserve driver in their team, there is subsequent suspicion that the Enstone-based team would also provide the British outfit with engines for the first time since 2013. 

That comes amid Mercedes boss Toto Wolff’s admission that his team may have to start cutting the number of teams they supply power to because of rising costs, but Williams have a deal with Mercedes until the end of the current engine freeze in 2025.

“It’s all speculation at the moment,” explained Capito.

“We have a contract with Mercedes until the end of 2025, and there will be new regulations in 2026. A lot of water will flow down the Rhine before then.”

Latifi himself previously admitted that his performances “need to improve,” and that it is “up to me to change” his fortunes.