The Formula E champion, who won an E-Prix in Berlin last Sunday, will do his very first meters this weekend as part of an official F1 weekend. The Williams team has provided Alexander Albon’s car so the Dutchman can gain experience with the 2022 car, it’s not his first F1 meters by the way. The Mercedes Junior has driven in a Mercedes car several times, but never on a GP weekend. He is the official reserve driver for the Mercedes team along with Stoffel Vandoorne.
“I want to thank Williams for this opportunity. This is a wonderful opportunity to get to know the team and the FW44 better. I think it’s fantastic that I can go out on track during a Formula 1 weekend,” said De Vries, who is currently preparing for the race. “These are going well. I have good support from the team. I’m looking forward to this experience in Spain.”
Dave Robson, Head of Vehicle Performance at Williams, is looking forward to the Dutchman’s performance. “It’s always nice to work with a new driver. That way you get a fresh look at the strengths and weaknesses of the car,” said Robson. “His work will be crucial. Nyck will do some important testing before handing the car over to Alex for VT2.” Sports director Sven Smeets shares the feeling of colleague Robson. “Nyck is a talented and experienced driver. I have no doubt that he will maximize his time in the FW44 and provide a valuable contribution to the team.”
Last season, the 27-year-old driver was linked with a seat at Williams but the Friesian eventually saw that go to Albon. Rumors are currently circulating that Nicholas Latifi’s position is under pressure. The Canadian is struggling with Albon as a team-mate and has been shot off the track multiple times this F1 season. A source has confirmed to this site that Mercedes is in talks with Williams about a seat for 2023. De Vries would be a serious candidate in this case.