F1 rumours: Nyck de Vries signs for AlphaTauri, Pierre Gasly free to join Alpine

Sam Cooper
Nyck de Vries talking to Pierre Gasly. Monza September 2022.

Nyck de Vries talking to Pierre Gasly at the Italian Grand Prix. Monza September 2022.

Nyck de Vries has reportedly signed a contract with AlphaTauri which will allow Pierre Gasly to move to Alpine.

The rumour of De Vries moving to Red Bull’s sister team has been ongoing ever since Colton Herta was denied a superlicence by the FIA.

The Dutchman made his long-awaited F1 debut at the Italian Grand Prix when he was asked to fill in for Alex Albon, who was suffering from appendicitis, at Williams.

De Vries impressed, earning himself a P9 finish, and putting himself in the shop window in terms of potential seats for 2023.

With Herta unavailable, Red Bull made a move for the 27-year-old and Canal+ have reported that a deal between the two parties is done.

While it remains unofficial, there were indications this was on its way as De Vries admitted he had flown to Austria to speak with Red Bull senior advisor Helmut Marko.

This also means that Gasly’s anticipated move to Alpine can be completed. The French side have been looking for a new driver ever since Fernando Alonso announced his impending move to Aston Martin at the start of the summer break.

After they were publicly rebuked in their advances for Oscar Piastri, Gasly, a Frenchman, emerged as the front-runner to partner Esteban Ocon next season.

Gasly has a contract with AlphaTauri until the end of 2023 having been part of the Red Bull group since December 2013 but the 26-year-old, who equalled Daniil Kvyat for most starts for Toro Rosso/AlphaTauri at the Italian Grand Prix, had hoped for a move away to a bigger team.

Sky Sports F1’s Simon Lazenby also suggested a deal may be done with it looking “likely” Gasly will partner Ocon.

“It looks likely, and I say that in inverted commas, that we are going to have an all-French line-up next year, Esteban Ocon with his ‘good friend’ Pierre Gasly,” Lazenby said during the delay before the Singapore Grand Prix.

“That could provide some fireworks because as we all know they aren’t particularly bosom buddies.”

Paul di Resta said the Alpine management will have to work carefully with the two if they are going to be team-mates.

“There’s a couple of ways of looking at it – it’s going to be fireworks,” he said. “Management level will have to put some definitive rules in, how they’re going to go about it.

“But equally, on the other side of that, the two of them will have to lift their game because they will want to prove against each other who is the best and the next French driver who can take their chance and lead the team to a world title.”

Gasly’s future has largely been out of his hands with Red Bull unwilling to let him go until they had a replacement, even in Thursday’s press conference, Gasly was cagey about what is in store.

“I would expect, obviously everyone knows the ongoing conversation and discussion, but [from] my side I think hopefully in the next two or three weeks we should have a clear answer on my future” said Gasly.

“But so far nothing has changed and when there will be something confirmed on my future, I’m sure you guys (media) will know about it.”

That future does now appear to have been sorted if De Vries does complete his move onto the F1 grid and to AlphaTauri.

Gasly will want to impress in what could be his final six races for AlphaTauri starting with the Singapore Grand Prix. He currently resides P11 in the Drivers’ standings, 24 points behind Valtteri Bottas.