The McLaren team are confident they have enough options for the second cockpit in the 2023 F1 season even if they lose Oscar Piastri. The situation surrounding the Australian driver was one of the most discussed topics during the first race weekend after the summer break. A meeting of the FIA’s board responsible for pilots’ contracts was held yesterday to review Piastri’s agreements. While waiting for the decision, Zach Brown was convinced that he had enough plans and would not be left without a pilot.
“I think it will be better to comment when everything is clear, but we have many plans. We have different options. Let’s see how things turn out. After the decision (by the board) we will see where we go,” said McLaren Racing CEO
“I tried to take the place, but Andreas [Зайдл] bans, so that pilot option is out!” Brown joked.
“We have a test program. Colton Herta did an excellent job. Pato [О’Уорд] was in the car late last year and did great too. Yes, around Alex [Палу] there is another situation – let’s see how it will develop. (Ganassi Racing sues driver who signed with McLaren – b.r.)
It was good to get back out there after the break.
— McLaren (@McLarenF1) August 28, 2022
Over the weekend in Belgium, the bosses of two of F1’s biggest teams – Mercedes and Red Bull – effectively backed Alpin’s stance against Piastre.
“I’ve got bigger problems than hanging out on the balcony watching The Muppet Show unfold,” Toto Wolff said when asked how he sees the situation
“I think it’s important that youth programs are respected. Some of these kids need to be careful what they tweet about multinational organizations. But I don’t have an inside look at contracts. I believe in karma, I believe in integrity. But I’m not here to judge because I’m not aware of the situation from a legal point of view,” added the head of Mercedes.
Christian Horner also pointed out that he was not aware of the exact agreements and this limited his ability to comment. However, according to him, the contracts should not allow such a thing at all.
“Purely contractually, this shouldn’t be happening at all. If Renault or Alpin have invested in a youngster’s career, they are doing so because they have an interest in that investment in the future. Obviously, there must be an element of loyalty in these relationships. I don’t quite understand the mess with the contracts. But even for the driver to think that he won’t be driving for Alpin next year demonstrates that something is wrong,” explained Horner.