Nyck de Vries, Williams, Monza, 2022

“Proud” De Vries keeps debut point score after stewards issue reprimand

2022 Italian Grand Prix

Posted on

| Written by and

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

Nyck de Vries says he was “proud” to score points on his Formula 1 debut for Williams.

The 2019 Formula 2 champion and 2021 Formula E world champion stepped into Alexander Albon’s Williams at short notice on the Saturday of the Italian Grand Prix weekend. He finished ninth on his F1 debut, scoring two world championship points.

After making his first F1 race start so unexpectedly after Albon was forced to withdraw for health reasons, De Vries said it had been a tense weekend preparing for his grand prix debut.

“The last 24 hours have just been a dream,” said De Vries. “I didn’t really have much time to think, because obviously everything was so rushed.

“I had a very bad sleep. It went from excitement to nerves and I didn’t even dare to look at my sleep tracking on my Oura Ring, because basically I spent the whole night awake. But perhaps it helped me. I couldn’t think and I just had to get on with the job.”

Starting from eighth on the grid due to penalties for other drivers after qualifying 13th, De Vries held his position on the opening lap and spent the vast majority of the race under pressure from Zhou Guanyu’s Alfa Romeo.

“My start wasn’t great, but it was good enough to maintain position,” he said “Actually the pace was very good. The car was great and we made a small adjustment from stint one to stint two.

“I asked a lot of help from the team, how to deal with the tools in the car to influence the balance. Again, I know that we had a little bit of help from outside with grid penalties and retirements, but hey, no one’s taking the points away from us.”

After many years working with Mercedes in Formula E and as a reserve driver for Mercedes F1 team, De Vries was congratulated after the race by Lewis Hamilton, who has worked alongside him for many years. Fellow Dutch driver Max Verstappen also wished his compatriot well when learning De Vries would be racing this weekend.

“He was kind,” De Vries said of Verstappen’s comments. “We had some messaging last night and even this morning Lewis congratulated me and they’ve all been very supportive and very kind.

Race start, Monza, 2022
Gallery: 2022 Italian Grand Prix in pictures
“Max just came to me and he said, ‘it’s gonna be fine, it’s gonna be good, you will be fine – just have a good start and get through and you’ll be good.’ So I appreciated the support from the others and also very thankful for all the fans who voted for me as Driver for the Day.”

After the race, De Vries was summoned to the stewards due to an incident that occurred under the late Safety Car. While cruising around the circuit at reduced speeds, the Williams driver appeared to slow dramatically at Curva Grande despite there being no cars in front of him at the time. Behind him, Zhou appeared to be caught out had to hit the brakes, briefly passing the Williams on track before De Vries continued.

After speaking with the stewards, he was handed a reprimand for the incident. De Vries explained that he was concerned that he was under the Safety Car delta time according to his dashboard, but had not been advised by his team that he could increase his speed. The stewards took into account De Vries’ unfamiliarity with his car and opted to impose a reprimand rather than a harsher penalty, allowing him to keep his points.

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

2022 Italian Grand Prix

Browse all 2022 Italian Grand Prix articles

Author information

Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...
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...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

33 comments on ““Proud” De Vries keeps debut point score after stewards issue reprimand”

  1. Can’t he just replace Latifi at Singapore already?

    1. I thought the same, then realized they probably can’t because of Latifi’s sponsors and the money they have already received. Too bad though.

    2. Yes, fingers crossed. Latifi is wholly uninspiring.

    3. I’ve been waiting for his F1 debut since 2019 when he was crowned F2 champion (12 podiums in 11 races – an F2 record). I was gutted when Mercedes didn’t find him a seat in F1 for 2020 and put him in their Formula E team instead. What a waste of a talented driver. Now he’s already 27 and a half years old.

    4. Is he fit enough for Singapore? Could be a long hard hot sticky physical race – but putting aside contracts and $$$, I know I’d rather see a competitive Williams pair battling for points, and I’m sure Nyck would find a way to race through the pain if a good finish was on offer! This was a fine 2nd super-sub appearance of the year (after Le Mans).

      1. Yeah, that is a very good point @bullfrog! He mentioned feeling quite strained especially in his shoulders after the race, so doing Singapore might be a bit of an ask.

    5. please please please!

      Watching this debut was one of the highlights of the weekend. It’s great to see real talent finding a way into F1. Maybe this result will help push Latifi out of F1 at last. He belongs in F2 until he collects the title.

    6. I think they said Latifi was not going to be replaced mid season. They have never confirmed him for next year however, I think Nyck has landed the finishing blow to Latifis F1 career though.

      Now it might be nice to see Nyck in the car again at Singapore, but it’s a very different track and I don’t expect the Williams to be as competitive.

      Regardless, Nyck has done a real solid job on his debut and you would imagine he’s near the top of the list for Williams if they’re looking for a strong driver over a pay driver.

    7. Contractually it would be too messy and having De Vries in the car wouldn’t close the deficit to Aston Martin with the number of races remaining.

      I suspect Latifi is safe for the remainder of the season.

  2. An absolutely fairy tale debut from a driver that really should have gotten a shot at a drive much earlier in his career. Hope this was enough to convince Dorlington to give the lad a shot at a full time drive in 2023.

  3. While I agree with everyone he did great. He deserves a heap of praise, sure, but he didn’t give a miracle performance, right? Yes, to beat the regular driver in Q is great stuff. But he beat Latifi… And he beat him with a tiny margin because Latifi messed up his final run. That small difference in the end actually meant a big difference in starting positions (by being lucky). In the race he did well enough to hold on, but that’s also all he did. He followed Alonso in his first stint and Gasly in his second, while being 1 compound softer than both. The fact he took 9th was again down to luck.

    1. Not sure what you’re talking about, there was 2 places between them on the starting grid (De Vries started 8th, Latifi 10th). Hardly a ‘big difference in starting positions’. There was night and day between them during the race.

      1. @t1redmonkey:
        You’re right, I remembered wrong. Had to re-watch the start. De Vries actually had a poor start and together with a slow Lando, Latifi got held up. Then through the chicane he got stuffed left and right. Lost more places because of Hamilton and Tsunoda. Battled with Haas and then went in on lap 16 while he started on the mediums, to get on set of hards. In the mean time, De Vries managed to pit at lap 20 from softs to mediums.
        Latifi passed Stroll on track to move out of last place, but Stroll retired later anyway. Latifi did get onto the softs in the end, but since they didn’t get going it didn’t change anything.

        Starting on the softs might have helped Latifi. Going opposite with mediums and softs would be good but I don’t know why he pitted so soon. So all in all a bad performance by Latifi. A great performance by De Vries. By just holding on he was gifted points because of Alonso and Ricciardo car failures.

        1. He got half the points Albon scored in all previous 16 races. Only, it took De Vries just one race, with barely any preparation on his racing debut. That’s a miracle performance. Not to mention the amazing tyre management he showed, with which some experienced drivers still struggle.

        2. What do you mean, de Vries had a poor start? His reaction time was spot on with those in front, got good traction, briefly passed Lando who cale by again into T1 for a net gain/loss of 0 places.

          How is that a poor start?

          1. How is that a poor start?

            Ask De Vries – he seems to think he could have done better.
            That’s a true race driver, never totally satisfied with their own performance.

          2. He says it “wasn’t great” which doesn’t equal poor. Surely a start where you keep position cannot be called “poor” by any stretch of the imagination. It was an OK start. Not poor.

    2. José Lopes da Silva
      11th September 2022, 19:40

      It wasn’t a miracle performance, it was just a great one, and some people cheer when a F1 driver who lacked a decent opportunity gets a good result. It’s part of the fans behaviour.

      Givem him a fixed seat for 6 years and I bet people will start saying that the guy ends up meriting his place, just like Stroll.

    3. Yes, to beat the regular driver in Q is great stuff.

      It is great stuff if you missed FP1 & FP2 (actually driving a different F1 car less than 24hrs earlier) and when you have to tow the other driver in Q and still beat him.

    4. No not a miracle. If it weren’t for the grid penalties he probably would have finished 12th-ish out of the points. Even that would be a good debut result in the Williams which would warrant some degree of praise.
      If anything all this result showed is that Latifi has no business racing in F1. I wouldn’t say that about any other driver on the grid.

      1. NdV left 7 seasoned F1 drivers looking at his rear. In an unfamiliar car. Only F1 teams and drivers can judge that to its proper value.

  4. Suffering Williams Fan
    11th September 2022, 19:15

    Great performance from Nyck this weekend. To jump into an unfamiliar car (the Williams having been completely changed since he last drove it) with one practice session, out-qualify your experienced teammate (whatever anyone says about Latifi’s performances, particularly in the last few Grands Prix) and then drive a clean race to a points finish is extremely impressive and far more than I expected for Williams with Albon missing this weekend (I do wonder where Albon might have qualified that car).

  5. This guy should be on the grid next year, on Latifi’s place. Nice guy, but not enough driver to be on the F1 grid…

  6. Apparently you have to thank Toto for the points, he seems to have had an hand in not restarting the race. Reminds me of bahrain when Russell should have not scored had rules been followed or when Hamilton managed to score at hockenheim when mercedes found a way to dsq both Saubers.

    1. Your supplier is giving you expired stuff…

  7. Great racing by NDV, but the excuse for not giving him a penalty is wrong. He’s been driving in FIA championships for many years, in f3, f2 and even wec. He’ll know the rules

    1. @djarvis but they didn’t use “unfamiliarity with the rules” as explanation, they used “unfamiliarity with the car”. No amount of running in F2 and F3 is going to help him with that.

  8. Make us think how decent that car really is.

    Albon is doing a good work but Latifi is no benchmark. Maybe they could have been scoring points much more frequently and couldn’t because Latifi don’t belong there.

  9. De Vries during the race. Team: go to this and that setting. De Vries: how do I do that? A late call, unfamiliar car. Still in the points, beating his teammate, extraordinary performance

  10. Great display by de Vries and a display that clearly shows the lack of talent at Williams, mainly Latifi, but also a result that should worry Albon that with his experience still lacks pure speed. That Williams is indeed more powerful than what people have perceived. Latifi is now history, the worst driver over the course of the last nine years. This was the nail in the coffin and finally we can get rid of one of the true pay drivers.

    1. Latifi is the worst pay driver over the course of the last nine years? what about Maldonado? Ericsson?
      i think Latifi’s decent, just not fast enough

      1. Both were much better than Latifi, who’s consistently the slower driver even in the days the car is clearly capable of more. That never happened with Ericsson and Maldonado.
        Mazepin is debatable, but with that car he would never show much anyway.

  11. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    12th September 2022, 16:10

    Tough one for Latifi but he just has to accept that this is a sport where only the best of the best deserve to participate. He’s had more chances than anyone to prove that he belongs in F1. You’re competing against the Ronaldos, Messis, Lewandowskis, Neymar’s, Mbappes, Harlands of the sport. Sometimes your best isn’t good enough. He still got close and definitely should look at other racing categories.

Comments are closed.