A piece of news that revolutionized the world of wheels in the last week was the confirmation of the signing of Fernando Alonso with the Aston Martin team from the 2023 season. With this, several unexpected changes to the grid for next year will also be affected. For this reason, the Alpine F1 Team got down to work to begin negotiations with other drivers to be the substitute for the Spanish.
With the retirement of Sebastian Vettel from professional activity, the British team stepped on the accelerator to contact the two-time world champion and hire his services until 2026, with the possibility of leaving every year. Therefore, Alpine, knowing that it is running out of Fernando Alonso, has seven motorists in the pipeline to keep the vacant seat, although two favorites bite at the top: Oscar Piastri and Daniel Ricciardo.
Piastri comes from winning the Formula 3 and Formula 2 titles in the 2020 and 2021 seasons, where he has shown his repertoire to make the leap to the premier class. Faced with this situation, the 21-year-old pilot, according to the French magazine “Autohebdo”, would have signed a pre-agreement with another team that ensures the possibility of making his debut in F1. Until now, there was talk of joining Williams on loan from Alpine, but McLaren appears in the fight.
In Zak Brown’s team, Piastri is the reserve driver in case Norris or Ricciardo cannot participate. For this reason, the pilot with Italian descent who has a season with an irregular performance could be left without his seat. Therefore, it seems that if the young Australian motorist signs with McLaren, Ricciardo will become the main candidate to be the replacement for Fernando Alonso.
Five more candidates for a seat
In addition to the two aforementioned riders who are racing to take the vacant place left by the Spanish, Alpine has five other riders in mind in case they are unable to finalize the arrivals of Oscar Piastri or Daniel Ricciardo. The rest of the competitors for the seat of the British team are the Germans Nico Hulkenberg (Aston Martin) 34 years old and several years in the maximum competition, and Mick Schumacher (Haas F1 Team), the Canadian Nicholas Lafiti (Williams) and the youth Zhou Guayu (AlphaRomeo), 23, and Frenchman Théo Pourchaire (ART Grand Prix), 18, who was runner-up in Formula 3 in 2020.