Nyck de Vries can give AlphaTauri ‘exactly what they need’: PlanetF1

Max Verstappen believes compatriot Nyck de Vries could be “exactly what AlphaTauri needs” in 2023, following the departure of Pierre Gasly.

De Vries has only made one start in Formula 1, last year an excellent points weekend for Williams at Monza in place of the unwell Alex Albon, but Verstappen’s wide experience in other forms of motorsport will help him acclimate to Red Bull’s sister team for his first full season.

That P9 finish in Italy prompted AlphaTauri to turn up for services after Gasly was cleared to take Fernando Alonso’s vacated seat at Alpine as the Dutchman turns 28 in early February.

So while not the youngest rookie ever in Formula 1, Red Bull motorsport adviser Helmut Marko said in October that he believes De Vries should step into Gasly’s role next season as team leader at AlphaTauri, alongside Yuki Tsunoda.

Verstappen understands Marko’s reasoning behind that view, but added that his talent and feeling for a car will be crucial in helping AlphaTauri move up the standings in 2023.

“In a way I understand that,” Max Verstappen told the Dutch edition of about Marko’s positioning of De Vries as a possible team leader.

“Nyck is a bit older anyway and has gained a lot of experience in other championships.

“Nyck may have to get used to Formula 1 in the beginning, like everyone else of course, but he knows how to handle a race car perfectly.

“I think Nyck feels the car quite well and that is exactly what AlphaTauri needs. Of course they lose Pierre there and that is why they need someone with experience in general again. Someone who can get in the car and hopefully lead in the right direction soon.” recommends

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De Vries enters Formula 1 as a Formula 2 and Formula E champion, and also holds two World Karting titles from his youth, in addition to his other achievements in the junior series.

In addition to his role as a Mercedes reserve driver, taking on some third driver duties last season with customer teams McLaren, Aston Martin and Williams, he was already well positioned in the Formula 1 paddock, but his substitute performance at Monza was what helped this year to secure his spot on the grid full-time.

Verstappen praised Marko for supporting his compatriot in this way, believing it is a hallmark of Red Bull that they put their faith in talent when they show it on track.

“Of course I knew some time before the announcement in Japan that the news was coming. It is of course a great opportunity for him,” said the two-time world champion.

“He has worked for this for a long time and it is only nice that the opportunity has now presented itself.

“After Monza, I don’t think there was any discussion at all. And I also have to say: Helmut is the kind of guy you just put in the car if he likes something, while other teams are often more careful. But that’s also the beauty of Red Bull. Anyway, I know Nyck very well, so this is just fun.”

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