F1: AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost thanks Nyck de Vries after sudden firing after British Grand Prix
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AlphaTauri principal Franz Tost has thanked Nyck de Vries after dismissing him from the team on Tuesday. Tost has released a statement after F1 fans had complained that the driver had not been acknowledged by the team since announcing Daniel Ricciardo will take the Alpha Tauri seat for the rest of the 2023 season.
Tost has said: “I would like to thank Nyck for his valuable contribution during his time with Scuderia AlphaTauri and I wish him all the best for the future.”
It is the first acknowledgement that De Vries has been released from the team after a poor start to the 2023 season. De Vries was in his first season in the sport after winning the 2020-21 Formula E championship and the Formula 2 championship in 2019. The driver was previously in the reserve driver position for Williams and made his F1 debut covering driver Alex Albon when he was recovering from surgery.
It was announced on Tuesday that his short stint driving alongside Yuki Tsunoda would be coming to an end after a poor start to the season. The 28-year-old Dutch driver had failed to score a single point in the championship and has crashed out of several races this season.
Nyck De Vries was seen on Wednesday at a lunch with Mercedes boss Toto Wolff, with wide speculation that the driver could make a move towards a Mercedes-owned team in 2024. De Vries will be replaced by Australian driver Ricciardo, 34, who has been a reserve driver for AlphaTauri’s parent team Red Bull after being dropped by McLaren at the end of the 2022 season.
Scuderia AlphaTauri took to social media earlier in the week to confirm that Ricciardo will be making his return to Formula One. In a statement, the team said: “Daniel is back! @danielricciardo, on loan from @redbullracing, will be racing for us for the remainder of the #F1 season, starting from the Hungarian GP.”
Ricciardo has been in the reserve driver seat with the leading Formula One team for 2023 after being dropped by McLaren bosses at the end of last year. The driver has twelve years of experience in F1 after previously racing with HRT, Toro Rosso, Red Bull and Renault before his move to his former team McLaren in 2021.
The popular Formula One driver has been seen alongside Mercedes-AMG reserve driver Mick Schumacher, the son of Michael Schumacher, at Silverstone this week in the RB19 as part of a Pirelli tyre test.
Ricciardo will now make his return to F1 alongside AlphaTauri driver Yuki Tsunoda as part of the Red Bull junior team. The opportunity comes as a lifeline for the Australian who was dropped from his McLaren seat in favour of Oscar Piastri after a couple of disappointing seasons with the team.
This could be the final chance for the reserve driver after being brought back to his former team, Red Bull, for 2023. He was previously unable to compete against current world champion Max Verstappen.
Ricciardo then went on to join Renault where he solidified his nickname, the ‘Honey Badger’ before replacing Carlos Sainz at McLaren in 2021, after Sainz signed a contract at Ferrari. The driver claimed one victory at the Italian Grand Prix in 2021, but that was not enough to save his seat for 2023.