Despite the possibility that Alpine would be searching for a backup racer for 2023, Otmar Szafnauer has not yet declared that Jack Doohan will be selected for the position.
Jack Doohan won’t be the Alpine Team’s reserve racer for the upcoming season, according to Alpine Team Principal Otmar Szafnauer.
Oscar Piastri, the team’s recent reserve driver, is expected to race for McLaren in 2019. Alpine must find a replacement, and Doohan, an Australian who is a part of the team’s new driver academy, was considered to be the front-runner.
Szafnauer would not, though, confirm Doohan’s prospective promotion.
Szafnauer informed the media, including RacingNews365.com, “It decision hasn’t been made, therefore for us to confirm that… it hasn’t been made.”
“First the wedding, then the baptism,” his mother used to say.
Doohan, who is now fourth in the F2 standings in his maiden season in the division, was rumoured to be a contender for a racing seat at Alpine for the upcoming season to replace Fernando Alonso. The Enstone team, though, decided to go with the more skilled and experienced Pierre Gasly.
Szafnauer complimented Doohan’s skills and promise even though he denied him a sudden promotion.
“He’s an impressive young man,” said Szafnauer.
“His focus will be to win the Formula 2 championship next year.
“That’s the focus, and then we’ll see where we go, but we’re grateful to have him as part of our Academy.”
Ricciardo is ruled out for Alpine
Daniel Ricciardo is one name that isn’t being considered to be Alpine’s backup racer in 2023.
After losing his race at McLaren, the Australian is expected to spend at minimum a year out of F1 in 2023. He has been connected with numerous teams seeking a reserve racer position.
Szafnauer, who showed greater for the squad in its Renault form in 2019 and 2020, claimed that Alpine has not been in contact with Ricciardo.
“We haven’t made that decision [about a reserve driver] yet,” said Szafnauer.
“But to be fair to Daniel, we haven’t been talking to him about a reserve [role].”
Piastri is still formally under contract with Alpine, therefore Szafnauer declined to comment on whether the Enstone team would be ready to let him out of the deal early to race for McLaren during the post-season test in Abu Dhabi.
“I think our legal teams are discussing that now, and I don’t know. There’ll be more next week,” said Szafnauer.
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