The Nyck de Vries decision that would leave former team-mate ‘absolutely gobsmacked’

Henry Valantine
AlphaTauri driver Nyck de Vries pictured at the Miami Grand Prix. Miami, May 2023.

AlphaTauri's Nyck de Vries pictured at the Miami Grand Prix. Miami, May 2023.

Le Mans winner Richard Bradley has said he would be “absolutely gobsmacked” if former team-mate Nyck de Vries took a break from racing, believing the ex-AlphaTauri driver will want to be back behind the wheel as soon as possible.

The Dutchman was let go by Red Bull’s junior squad after only 10 races of the 2023 season, with the Formula 2 and Formula E champion having been out-performed by Yuki Tsunoda overall in his time with the team.

While critics of the decision to place Daniel Ricciardo at the team believe De Vries’ sacking to be a harsh one, the 28-year-old now finds himself back on the market for a drive in another series.

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De Vries’ manager recently claimed that there is clamour for his signature across several series, also saying conversations having taken place with Formula 1 teams about a potential move.

And for Bradley, who has raced alongside De Vries in the past, believes he will want to get back racing as quickly as he can, with his reputation in every other series in which he has competed previously remaining on a high.

“I know what Nyck’s like, I would be absolutely gobsmacked if he decided to take a break. He’ll want to be back in something as soon as possible,” Bradley told the latest episode of the On Track GP Podcast.

“As I’ve said before, Nyck’s street cred in every single series around the world [is high] no matter what because everyone in motorsport kind of knows Formula 1 is its own kettle of fish really, you know that what happens in Formula 1 kind of stays in Formula 1, and people realise it’s a very different ballgame, unless you do something so consistently bad.

“For example, you have some drivers like Pastor Maldonado, obviously, we called him ‘Crashtor Maldonado’ because he kept crashing in F1. But when he came to sportscars, he still kind of had that reputation and he had a few costly shunts – and that’s that side of it.

“But in terms of performance, everyone knows how good Nyck was in Formula E and sportscars, and also IndyCar when he tested in that.

“So he’ll be in something next year, and he’ll be in something competitive and he’ll win in whatever he’s in, 100%.” recommends

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De Vries will be back behind the wheel of a racing car at Assen this weekend, doing demonstration runs in an MP Motorsport Formula 2 car as part of the multi-class, multi-series JACK’s Racing Day weekend at the Dutch circuit.

But with De Vries’ big chance in Formula 1 now seemingly gone, Bradley, who won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the LMP2 category in 2015, spoke about the impact that can have on drivers who don’t succeed in the “piranha pond” of Formula 1, though he predicts the Dutchman will be absolutely fine with whatever comes next.

“It’s just the way the way it goes, and if you don’t make it then you [can] end up making a very good career,” Bradley said.

“There’s plenty of drivers who looked at it and they had the chance to go to Formula 1, where everyone knows it’s like swimming in a piranha pond, and basically you have one shot effectively, or you can go to other teams and consistently make a good living and have a very, very good life.

“So in terms of that side of it, it’s not that different because you know every time you get in a racing car, your job is to get in and do the best job you can with it and some cars will suit you and some cars won’t suit you.

“He’ll be able to adapt quite easily and also he’s already competed in sportscars, Formula E and everything and he had no problems at all.”

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