After Fernando Alonso announced his transfer to Aston Martin, the Enstone team did not hesitate to confirm the place of their coach, Oscar Piastri, who in the future had invested a lot of money in the youth series and a large test program in this year.
Before the publication of the press release, the contestant was personally informed by Otmar Szafnauer and had to express his gratitude for the opportunity. A few hours later, however, he posted a scathing entry on Twitter, distancing himself from the team’s position and saying that he would definitely run next year.
I understand that, without my consent, Alpine F1 have issued a press release this afternoon that I am driving for them next year. This is a mistake and I have not signed a contract with Alpine for 2023. I will not drive for Alpine next year.
– Oscar Piastri (@OscarPiastri) August 2, 2022
Then it was already known that the player managed by Mark Webber signed a contract with McLaren. The contractual dispute will be resolved on Monday by a special FIA commission appointed to deal with such matters.
Oscar Piastri is a top talent, whose services have indeed been eagerly requested by many teams in the paddock area, but some senior players have questioned his honesty and wisdom in playing for their team. The question of whether such behavior will give him a hiccup in the future. On the other hand, if he proves his talent in F1, he will probably defend himself. However, this does not change the fact that his character was not well received in the paddock.
“I have bigger problems than sitting on the balcony like the Muppets and enjoying how things are going,” said Toto Wolff when asked by Motorsport.com about the state of the driver market. “I think it’s important that driver development programs are respected. I think some kids should be careful what they say on Twitter about international organizations. But I have no knowledge of these agreements.”
“I believe in karma and I believe in honesty. But I’m not here to judge because like I said, I don’t know the legal status of it.”
Christian Horner from Red Bull, whose teams have passed many young players, also spoke in the same voice. Briton emphasized how important trust is in these matters.
“I don’t really understand, because contractually it shouldn’t happen at all,” he told Sky F1. “I believe that if Renault and Alpine invested in his junior career, it is because they were investing in his youth and future. There must be an element of trust in all this.”
“I don’t understand what happened contractually. But anyway, the fact that he found himself in a position where he probably thought he didn’t have an Alpine race next year shows that something is wrong.”
“I hope it will be resolved. He is a great talent. He drove for Arden in Formula 4, Formula Renault, so I know him well.”
The head of the Alpine team, Otmar Szafnauer, admitted that his team will draw conclusions from this situation in the future and already intends to check the contractual status of their other students.
“We can certainly draw conclusions from this,” he said. “Now we will look at all our activities and analyze them, and if we can do something better, we will implement these procedures in future contracts.”