Oscar Piastri could soon become a truthful Formula 1 driver, and according to a respected broadcaster, could already sign a contract for the race.
RacingNews365 host Tom Coronel says Australian Piastri, who is currently the reserve driver for the French team Alpine, could end up in Lone Williams from Alpine next year.
Coronel added that with Nicolas Latifi’s slow start to 2022, the parties may agree to a loan earlier, which could see Piastry make his debut before the end of the year.
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The 21-year-old has already undergone several tests at Formula 1 Machinery this year, but has yet to make his debut at an official session at the Grand Prix weekend.
Coronel – who himself had a successful career in traveling cars – said Alpine had a “decent” budget to help develop Piastri and that an agreement could be signed at the last Grand Prix in Monaco.
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“I don’t know when they’ll come out with it. It’s a strong rumor,” he said.
“If you want to mature someone in Formula 1 like Piastri, you have a decent budget for Alpine: a budget to park him and get him used to Formula 1.”
Fernando Alonso is unlikely to retire at the end of the year, and his pace in early 2022 was good and literally good enough to keep him in his seat for next year.
It is not uncommon for large teams to lend junior drivers to other teams so as not to throw them straight into the deep end when taking their shots in the end.
George Russell and Charles Leclerc both spent time in Williams and Saber (now Alfa Romeo), respectively, before being called up to the senior Mercedes and Ferrari squads.
The colonel said that if Piastri goes to Williams in the middle of the season, it will confirm Alpine’s 2023 plans.
“You wouldn’t lend a driver like Piastri, (or) put him in Williams for no reason.
“That means (Alpine) wants to keep their driver lineup unchanged.”
Former Grand Prix winner Ralph Schumacher said last month that he would like to see Piastri at Williams.
Alpine team president Otmar Sajafnauer said he had heard Williams’ rumors, but there had been no discussion of an initial change.
Szafnauer motorsport.com says he will consider any chance of getting more mileage for Piastri.
“In the past, when McLaren came to us and said, ‘Hey, can we use (Piastri) as a reserve driver?’, We said yes.
“The reason is that the more seat time he can get instead of sitting outside, the better. So we’ll keep that in mind strategically. But I don’t know what’s going on with Williams.”
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