Nyck de Vries, Williams, Monza, 2022

Alonso and Hamilton praise newcomer De Vries after qualifying debut

2022 Italian Grand Prix

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Nyck de Vries earned the praise of two Formula 1 world champions after his impressive debut in qualifying at Monza today.

Williams handed De Vries the chance to make his debut as a substitute for Alexander Albon, who suffered a bout of appendicitis since yesterday. De Vries took his car into Q2, out-qualified team mate Nicholas Latifi, and after penalties is due to start tomorrow’s race in the top 10.

Fernando Alonso said it was “definitely” an impressive performance by the debutant. “I think when you jump in a car and you only have one practice, obviously it’s difficult to get up to speed. So a very good day for him. Hopefully tomorrow a good race as well.”

De Vries became the first person in more than 40 years to drive two different F1 cars in a single race weekend, as he took part in first practice yesterday for Aston Martin. Alonso said that will have helped him adjust to the Williams.

“I think it helped him to do FP1, arguably, so he got a little bit more experience,” said Alonso. “But I think he’s doing good and hopefully tomorrow we can fight as well in the race, not too much, but it’s going to be good fun.”

De Vries was previously a junior driver at McLaren and is now backed by Mercedes. One driver he worked with at both teams is Lewis Hamilton, who said he deserves a full-time place on the grid.

“I haven’t seen his quali performance but Nyck is a very talented driver,” said Hamilton. “I’ve known him since he was really young, when I was at McLaren my dad was trying to help him get into Formula 1.

“He’s been a real valuable member of our team, he works does a lot of work on the simulator. He’s always super-positive, he fires me emails. And so I was so happy to hear this morning that he’ll be given the opportunity to drive.

“He deserves a place here, I think, so I hope today’s been good for him.”

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2022 Italian Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...
Claire Cottingham
Claire has worked in motorsport for much of her career, covering a broad mix of championships including Formula One, Formula E, the BTCC, British...

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10 comments on “Alonso and Hamilton praise newcomer De Vries after qualifying debut”

  1. More than 40 years, so presumably someone in the early-1980s.
    More relevantly, he did well under the circumstances, & his performance also speaks volumes about Latifi, who has driven the entire season thus far, while De Vries’ only previous driving experience at Williams is from Spanish GP FP1.

  2. It just seems a bit ironic that so many, teams and individuals are making the comment that (insert any of 3, 4 or 5 names here) deserves a place on the F1 grid, when there is so much resistance to increasing the number of teams.
    Maybe what we need are 12, 13 or 14 teams and 24 or more seats available. It would get my vote.
    Like the Nike Guy said …. “Just Do it.!” Wonder what Bernie would do.?

  3. Man, de Vries guy was driving a Aston Martin yesterday. He sat on the Williams for the first time today and was faster than Latifi who’s there for 3 seasons.

    Time for Williams to try something different. People talk about Stroll but this guy is much, much worse, a complete waste of a seat.

    1. Yeah, pretty clear Williams would do well to offer De Vries that race seat for next year since Latifi really does not seems to have much potential to get anywhere while Nyck shows he might be able to match the kind of pace Albon has shown their car to have even with very little preparation.

  4. If De Vries can just jump in at Williams at short notice, defeat Latifi and have a top 10 start tomorrow, what the hell is Albon usually doing then in that Williams?

    1. Pretty sure Albon would have qualified close to the top ten, or possibly would have been in Q3 here @spafrancorchamps, we saw it in the last couple of races there has been a really solid gap between him and Latifi for most qualifying sessions.

      1. Yes, and that seems pretty solid, until a new guy steps in the car and immediately does the exact same. Without having almost a full season of experience with this car.

        It makes me believe he could do much more than Albon if he’d have a couple of more race weekends under his belt with this car.

        1. @spafrancorchamps It might make you believe it. It doesn’t make it so. It simply isn’t possible to ‘know’ where Albon would have ended up.

          Sure, if De Vries was in the seat for a few races and showed a consistently greater margin that Albon managed, then there is some basis for such a thought, but otherwise this is not a very qualified assumption.

          That said, I agree that NDV has done a great job (and/or NL continues to do a bad one).

    2. He must have had his appendix out already.

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