The performance of Nyck de Vries in F1 Italian GP was praised by his Mercedes boss Toto Wolff along with fellow drivers.
De Vries was called in at the last moment as a replacement for ill Alexander Albon in F1 Italian GP where he had to undergo surgery for an appendicitis issue. A participant in FP1 with Aston Martin, the Dutchman moved along the pit lane replacing the Thai from FP3.
Helped by penalties to other drivers, he started eighth and finishing ninth, scoring two points on his debut in a fine drive amid less laps under his belt in the Williams car. A driver who so far in his career has had a good track record winning both F2 and Formula E titles, the result at Monza was timely for de Vries who gathered praise all-through.
Impressions, opinions, full time on the grid –
Toto Wolff: “I think what else should he do in terms of performance than what he has shown. No training, he jumped in the car he hadn’t driven straight into FP3 and showed what he’s capable of doing. A good young man. He is not only fast, but he is a good team player. I don’t think that anyone else could have done a better job than he did. Then you give him a different car and a different team mate. He starts eighth and he finishes ninth.”
Conversation, GP debut, nerves –
Max Verstappen: “First of all, enjoy it and don’t think about it too much, don’t stress about it too much. I remember my first one… it happens so quickly everything but I think more probably if you just tell yourself we’ll see what happens instead of really stressing out. I need a good start. I need a good first lap. You shouldn’t think about that and I think he handled everything really well of course. But yeah, it’s nice. We know each other really well so it was just a quick little motivation speech”.
George Russell: “Yeah, he obviously did an excellent job and yeah, impressive. Throughout all of our karting career – the three of us race against him – knew him well, and he was always one of the very best and there’s no doubt he’s deserve another place in Formula 1. So that’s just how the sport is. Sometimes, you know, there’s 20 drivers, not everybody gets an opportunity but certainly now he’s proved everything he has to.”
Saw him fight –
Verstappen: “I saw him battling in front of me when he was defending tenth at the time. And, yeah, for Nyck to jump in and deliver this performance is definitely… you know, it’s not easy at all. I think he did a great job from the things I saw, also in terms of defending. He just kept his cool, didn’t make mistakes and I’m very happy for him to score the points. It’s impressive, of course, in your first race.”
Similarities with Bahrain 2020, attitude –
Russell: “I think probably tougher for him to be honest than it was for me because I was obviously a full time race driver then and equally as well for him jumping from Aston Martin on Friday into a Williams; it’s a different car, the seating position is different. I remember when I was doing testing with Mercedes, Force India at the time and driving F2 it took quite a few laps just to get used to the different feeling of how those cars reacted. As I said, there’s not a lot more to say; to score points on your debut in a Williams, it’s pretty spectacular no doubt.”
Without a shadow of doubt, he was the driver of the day and deservedly so. Ninth place is three places better than team mate on the day Nicholas Latifi’s best result this season. For the Williams team, it gives them a selection dilemma for 2023. The result from de Vries has not only put him up for grabs at the Grove-based team, but also others like Alpine and AlphaTauri amid merry-go-round.
Here’s Nyck de Vries on exhaustive Monza race