Oscar Piastri has certainly been a popular name over the summer break. The young Aussie had been tipped for an F1 seat in 2023 but publicly rejected Alpine’s offer for a drive next season on social media.
With Oscar being part of Alpine’s junior programme and having been nurtured and supported by the French team for many years, he was naturally the first choice to replace Fernando Alonso when the Spaniard announced his shock move to Aston Martin for 2023.
However, after Alpine put out their statement saying Oscar had been promoted to a race seat for 2023, only an hour later, Piastri took to Twitter to say that it wasn’t the case.
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 (@OscarPiastri) August 2, 2022
Speaking to media, including The Race, on Saturday, Otmar Szafnauer revealed that Oscar initially thanked him for the opportunity before snubbing the team a little later.
“I told Oscar before the announcement was made,” Szafnauer explained.
“He happened to be in the simulator. So I went and found him and he smiled and was thankful.
“So, we made the release very quickly.”
The Alpine Team Principal elaborated and said they took this approach to avoid a “back and forth with his management” but that they later “heard through social media” that Oscar has said thanks but no thanks to their offer.
Piastri is still working with the team this weekend back at the factory, which we imagine might be a little awkward 😬😂
Where do you think Piastri will drive in 2023?