Nyck de Vries, AlphaTauri AT04, 2023

De Vries: Experience in other championships will help me in first F1 season

2023 F1 season

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AlphaTauri rookie Nyck de Vries says his vast experience racing in a variety of motorsport series will benefit him during his rookie season in Formula 1.

The 2019 Formula 2 champion and 2021 Formula E world champion will make his full-season debut in F1 this season in Red Bull’s junior team. He will be comfortably the oldest of the three rookies this season at 28-years-old.

De Vries made an unexpected grand prix debut last season with Williams at the Italian Grand Prix, stepping in for the unwell Alexander Albon and scoring two points with a ninth-place finish. Despite having a grand prix under his belt and multiple Friday practice runs last year, De Vries believes he does not enjoy the same testing experience as fellow rookies Oscar Piastri and Logan Sargeant.

“I would say I’m still a rookie,” De Vries said. “Of course, I had the privilege of driving many different cars, but I think the benefits of that are not so much down to the track time, because actually that was very limited.

“Apart from three rookie tests – two at Mercedes, one with Scuderia AlphaTauri – I didn’t do proper testing. The FP1s were a great opportunity and experience to get myself out during a grand prix weekend. That brings a very different pressure to when you are doing a full day of testing because you have very limited time. It’s an opportunity to show yourself but equally, there is more to lose than win so for sure, that is good experience to have.”

Having won the Formula E world championship and raced in the World Endurance Championship across multiple seasons, De Vries accepts his vast racing experience will benefit him during his first year in F1.

“I think having the experience to have worked with different teams in different environments will bring a lot of value, but in terms of pure track and race time, I reckon I have less than this year’s other rookies,” he said. “However, I am a bit older and I’ve had the opportunity to race in different championships, so that is a level of experience that brings some value.”

Joining AlphaTauri, a team who he had never driven for prior to signing his racing contract, De Vries says he has worked hard over the winter to get familiar with his new team.

“I’ve been very warmly welcomed,” he said. “It seemed like everyone was very excited about my arrival and we certainly did everything we could to integrate me as quickly as possible.

“I spent time with different engineering departments, with different people within the team, and we’ve also done a little bit more specific work on preferences, likings, on all sorts of things. I feel like we did a good job of using the time to welcome and integrate me into the team but at the same time, we have started to look at gaps where there is room for improvement which we needed to highlight.

“We’ve used our time well in terms of the physical aspect and we’ve been pushing really hard. I’m just basically enjoying the ride and I’m very excited to start our season.”

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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...

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2 comments on “De Vries: Experience in other championships will help me in first F1 season”

  1. I sure hope it will show. With Tsunoda in the car next to him who still feels like he is having a lot to learn, the team will be VERY glad to have another solid pair of hands to replace Gasly (although Gasly seemed disgruntled, frustrated for much of last season leading to mistakes too)

  2. This is why i said de Vries isn’t a rookie more a driver who join a new team. It will be more if the car works much beter then last year and cashing in points as soon possible.

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