Alpine in trouble?…

Alpine announced on social media today, that Oscar Piastri will be racing for them in 2023, alongside Esteban Ocon to replace Fernando Alonso… but what on earth is going on?

Oscar Piastri then took to social media to say that he “will not be driving for Alpine next year” hours after the team announced they would be promoting him to a full time race seat in 2023.

Piastri, announced as Aston Martin-bound Fernando Alonso’s replacement for 2023 earlier on but the Austrialian driver then took to Twitter and Instagram to insist otherwise.

I understand that, without my agreement, Alpine F1 have put out a press release late this afternoon that I am driving for them next year. This is wrong and I have not signed a contract with Alpine for 2023. I will not be driving for Alpine next year.

Oscar Piastri on social media.

BWT Alpine F1 Team confirms 21-year-old reserve driver Oscar Piastri as Esteban Ocon’s teammate starting from 2023. In line with the commitments made by the team to the young Australian, Oscar will be promoted to race driver and step in Fernando Alonso’s seat from next year onwards.

Alpine earlier today.

Oscar is a bright and rare talent. We are proud to have nurtured and supported him through the difficult pathways of the junior formula. Through our collaboration over the past four years, we have seen him develop and mature into a driver who is more than capable of taking the step up to Formula 1. As our reserve driver he has been exposed to the team at the track, factory and testing where he has shown the maturity, promise and speed to ensure his promotion to our second seat alongside Esteban. Together, we believe the duo will give us the continuity we need to achieve our long-term goal of challenging for wins and championships.

Otmar Szafnauer, Alpine team principle.

What will Alpine do now? Who will drive for them?

There isn’t much for them to do apart from look for a new driver… but who is the question?

Daniel Ricciardo? Could Piastri take Ricciardo’s seat at McLaren and then Ricciardo go back to Alpine formally Renault?

Or possibly Zhou Gunayu? He was formally an Alpine junior until they let him go last year… but if push comes to shove would Zhou be happy to go and be apart of their family? If this did happen, this would then make way for Theo Pourchaire at Alfa Romeo.

If none of the above, Alpine could possibly go down the rookie route and look at F2, Felipe Drugovich, is currently leading the championship, plus he has no junior driver clause as he is not signed to an acadamey.

If not, Red Bull may push for one of their academy drivers to get that seat? They have a few juniors currently in F2 and looks like it would be their last year possibly.

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