Mercedes said Lewis Hamilton will not take part in the first F1 training session ahead of the French doctor. This is an unusual situation for years. However, the German team therefore meets the regulatory requirements of Formula 1.
Press / Mercedes / In the photo: Lewis Hamilton
To find a Formula 1 weekend without Lewis Hamilton, it is necessary to go back to the end of the 2020 season, when the Briton left GP Sakhir due to a coronavirus infection. Before that, since his F1 debut in 2007, Hamilton has been attending all sessions. This will change this weekend, because the Mercedes driver will be watching Friday’s practice session from the garage.
Mercedes announced that Nyck de Vries will replace the 37-year-old in the first session ahead of the French doctor. The Dutchman is Brackley’s backup driver on a daily basis and helps him with simulations. Giving the 27-year-old a chance does not mean, however, that Hamilton has any problems and will not take part in future F1 races. In this way, Germany is only implementing a new principle point.
From the 2022 season, each team must allocate two training sessions for a young driver. The rules for such a competitor is a competitor who drove the maximum level of two Grand Prix. De Vries, who has never been given the opportunity to race regularly in F1 despite his F2 championship, fulfills this requirement.
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– Nyck will replace Lewis in the first training, which is related to providing training sessions for young drivers. We can’t wait to see him on the track. We want to know how he will handle it – said Toto Wolff, head of Mercedes, in a communication from the team.
For Nyck de Vries it is already the second appearance in Friday’s F1 practice in the 2022 season. In mid-May, the Dutchman entered the Williams car during the Spanish GP, when he replaced Alexander Albon in one session. In this way, the British team also implemented the provisions of the regulations to give the young driver a chance.
De Vries is the current Formula E world champion. The Dutchman won the title for Mercedes. Soon, however, the driver will have to find new plans for the future, because Germany is leaving FE. The electric racing team has been sold to McLaren, and McLaren has already announced that it sees no room for de Vries in its line-up next year.
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Formula 1 Lewis Hamilton Motor racing Motorsport England Mercedes Toto Wolff Nyck de Vries