Oscar Piastri to race for McLaren after contract resolution

Oscar Piastri will succeed McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo in 2023 after the FIA’s Contract Recognition Board (CRB) upheld the team’s contract with the Formula 2 champion.

Both McLaren and Alpine believe they have a valid Australian service contract for next season.

On Friday, CRB upheld McLaren’s contract, revealing that he had signed a two-year deal on July 4, the day after the British Grand Prix.

Immediately after the verdict was announced, McLaren announced that Piastri would join the team in 2023.

Piastri has been considered since 2019 rookie Lando Norris — who will be his teammate in 2023 — George Russell and Alex Arr. Best young driver to enter F1 since Alex Albon.

Piastri said: “I am very excited to make my F1 debut with such a prestigious team as McLaren and I am very grateful for the opportunity provided to me. The team has a long tradition of giving opportunities to young talent and I look forward to it Working hard with Lando to push the team to the front of the grid.”

The news leaves Alpine without Aston Martin replacement Fernando Alonso next year. AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly has emerged as a leading contender for the seat, although Ricciardo, who is about to leave McLaren, has opened the door for Piastri’s entry, but remains in it.

If Alpine wants Gasly, they will have to pay Red Bull to buy out the final year of the French driver’s deal.

Alpine issued a brief statement following the verdict, saying: “We believe this matter is in our favour and will announce our full driver line-up for 2023 in due course.”

It’s a humiliating setback for Alpine, who has lost a longtime Drivers Academy member after an extensive Formula 1 testing programme was set up at his expense this year.

The feud began over the summer of Formula 1 after Aston Martin confirmed the signing of Alonso for 2023.

Alpine academy product Piastri, considered a future star, seemed the most logical choice to fill the void, with Alpine quickly announcing that he would be joining the F1 team next year, although it is worth noting that a driver accompanying the press release did not quote him ‘s F1 debut.

Two hours later, Piastri tweeted what is now widely known: “I know, without my consent, Alpine F1 issued a press release late this afternoon saying I will They drive. It’s wrong, I haven’t signed a contract with Alpine for 2023. I’m not going to drive to Alpine next year.”

Piastri manager Mark Webber played a key role in the discussions with McLaren. Webber worked with McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl when he was in charge of the Porsche World Endurance Championship team. Under Seidl’s leadership, Webb was part of the team that won the WEC Championship in 2016.

Since both Alpine and McLaren were confident that they had a valid contract with Piastri, the matter was referred to the Contract Recognition Board (CRB).

The CRB was formed in 1992 to settle a dispute between Jordan and Benetton over Michael Schumacher’s services, which Benetton won. It has been rarely called in F1 since then, but it settled the 2004 Anglo-American and Williams vs. Jenson Button, BAR wins, and the 2007 Toyota and BMW vs. Timo Glock, Toyota win.


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