Driver with insider knowledge says Alpine were ‘playing’ with Oscar Piastri
F3 driver Juan Manuel Correa, who shares the same physio as Oscar Piastri, blames Alpine for the ongoing contract dispute.
When Fernando Alonso’s switch to Aston Martin for 2023 was announced, Alpine moved to confirm that their reserve driver Piastri would step up to fill the vacancy.
However, Piastri would react to that press release by denying that he would be driving for Alpine next season, leaving his future up in the air.
It has since been reported that Piastri has signed a deal to join McLaren from 2023, where he will replace his compatriot Daniel Ricciardo, who departs a year earlier than planned after the termination of his contract.
But, with Alpine believing that they still hold a valid contract with Piastri, the case has now gone to Formula 1’s Contract Recognition Board, the hearing having begun on Monday.
On the same day Correa appeared as a guest on Sky Sports F1’s ‘Any Driven Monday‘ programme, where he was asked for his opinion on the Piastri drama.
As it turns out, he knows a lot about what is going on behind the scenes, since he shares the same physio as Piastri.
Correa contemplated what he would be able to say, but did point the finger at Alpine for what has happened, believing the team’s actions were the catalyst for what followed.
“I don’t know how much I should say, the thing is my physio this year is actually Oscar’s full-time physio,” Correa revealed. “So, I know quite a bit about it.
“From my perspective and what is public knowledge, I think it is actually more of Alpine’s fault. They were playing a little bit with Oscar and Fernando. They didn’t give Oscar I think what they had promised, and any driver in his position would have done what he did. That’s what I think, from what I know.”
Casting his thoughts on where Piastri may go from here, Correa expects the Aussie to be a McLaren driver for 2023.
It has been reported that Alpine have now made AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly their preferred option, with AlphaTauri demanding a fee to release him one year before his contract expires.
“But of course, the sport loves drama,” Correa continued. “I think the hearing was this morning, but I think he will be racing at McLaren next year.
“And I hope so for him because he deserves an F1 seat. It was already a shame that he didn’t get a seat immediately last year. So, at least now he will get his chance.”