Is McLaren watching Oscar Piastri?

That Oscar Piastri is preparing to make his Formula 1 debut with Williams next season has been circulating for some time, but it is possible that there is another twist in the talented Australian’s fate.

While Daniel Ricciardo continues to struggle at McLaren and cannot adapt to the car, the Woking team has taken note of his 21-year-old compatriot. At least in the paddock of the Austrian Grand Prix, such rumors have already been discussed.

Riccardo’s contract with McLaren expires at the end of next year, and of course ideally everyone would be more pleased if there were no grounds for raising the issue of early termination. In reality, however, both sides – both the team and Daniel – admit that their alliance is not delivering the expected results.

Observers note that in the most difficult situations, Riccardo’s face not only no longer has his signature smile, but he just looks confused, which is not at all typical of him. This was also the case after the recent qualifying in Austria, where he dropped out in the very first session.

The situation is not easy and McLaren cannot wait too long with its solution. Already halfway through the season, it would soon be necessary to decide whether Ricciardo will remain in the team in 2023, or whether he should look for a replacement. If the second scenario is implemented, Piastri could be one of the possible heroes.

Oscar is Alpine’s reserve driver this season, having been admitted to the Renault Sport Academy in 2020. At the same time, agreements between Alpine and Williams regarding the Australian have not yet been signed, although informed sources make it clear that Grove has already made a fundamental decision to replace Nicholas Latifi with Piastri.

Perhaps Alpine is in no rush to formalize these agreements, as the contract with Fernando Alonso for next year has not yet been finalized either.

In fact, at the moment, Piastri’s future is in question, and if such a promising driver has no official obligations to anyone, it’s pretty clear there will be interest in him. As for the potential prospects at McLaren, it depends largely on Riccardo’s decision: is he ready to continue working with a team where he is far from doing well?

Even on those weekends when he manages to earn points, such as in Austria, he regularly falls short of Lando Norris, his partner.

At the same time, of course, Daniel himself cannot be satisfied with this turn of events, he wants to fight for better results than the positions at the end of the top ten, and the longer the run of not the most successful weekends, the more damage his professional reputation becomes. caused. Until recently, he was considered one of the smartest representatives of his generation of racers, who competed almost on an equal footing with Max Verstappen in Red Bull.

At the same time, anyone who is aware of his situation at McLaren notices that the relationship between him and the team remains very normal, everyone understands that the parties are doing everything they can to rectify the situation, but it is not working.

Much now really depends on Ricciardo’s decision, although he has always said that he clearly intends to play for McLaren until the end of his contract. If this works out, Piastri will likely have to try on the Williams uniform.

But if Daniel suddenly decides to part with McLaren, options are possible.

Edition The Race makes bold assumptions that the parties can reach some sort of settlement agreement in which Ricciardo will leave a place in McLaren but will be able to move to another championship team, say the same Williams or Aston Martin, if Sebastian Vettel concludes his career to end.

In this case, nothing will stop McLaren from getting Oscar Piastri, although it cannot be considered the only scenario. What if Woking decides the more experienced Alex Albon is more suitable for them? †

Source: F1 News

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