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De Vries could partner Verstappen at Red Bull – Shovlin

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De Vries partner Verstappen

Mercedes’ loss might be Red Bull Racing’s gain, according to Andrew Shovlin, the trackside engineering director at Mercedes. Shovlin has worked closely with Nyck de Vries, a Dutch Formula 1 driver, who was destined for higher things than being a test and reserve driver in the Mercedes Formula 1 team.

In fact, Shovlin believes that de Vries might soon become a teammate of Max Verstappen at Red Bull Racing.

According to the book “Max & Nyck” by Dutch authors Ivo Pakvis and Stijn Keuris, Shovlin has a very high opinion of de Vries. He expresses regret at letting de Vries go and believes that he might soon become part of the Red Bull Racing factory team.

Shovlin is so confident in de Vries’ potential that he even suggests it wouldn’t be surprising if de Vries were to join Red Bull Racing in the next twelve months or so.

It is important to note that numerous factors must align for de Vries to become Verstappen’s teammate at Red Bull Racing. One factor is that Sergio Pérez has already signed a contract with the team until 2024, so ending the agreement prematurely would require either a conflict with Verstappen or a significant decline in Pérez’s performance.

Moreover, de Vries must demonstrate exceptional performance to have a shot at promotion to the A-team. However, Shovlin is confident in de Vries’ talent and believes that he can win races if he is in the right car and team.

De Vries, who is 28 years old, is relatively old for a Formula 1 rookie. However, he has already gained a lot of experience, for example in the service of Mercedes in Formula E or Toyota in the WEC. Shovlin believes that de Vries has less time to become a world champion due to his age, but he makes up for it with his experience.

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When the opportunity for a regular seat in the top tier of Formula 1 presented itself, Mercedes faced difficulty in retaining de Vries. The team had an agreement with the Dutch driver that allowed him to choose the best available option if he couldn’t secure a place with a Mercedes team.

Although de Vries fit well into the Mercedes team as a reserve and test driver, Mercedes couldn’t prevent him from pursuing his dream. While the team would have preferred to retain de Vries to use him as needed, doing so would have hindered a driver’s pursuit of his aspirations. Mercedes valued de Vries for his Formula E championship and his performance as a reserve driver, and the team wanted to continue supporting him.

Shovlin does not want to rule out a return of the Dutchman to Mercedes in a few years’ time. “There is nothing against it,” says the engineer. Last year, de Vries gave a demonstration of his talent at Mercedes’ customer Williams, where he finished ninth in the points in his very first Grand Prix at Monza.

In conclusion, de Vries has a lot of potential to become a successful Formula 1 driver, and his experience in other motorsport categories could be an advantage.

De Vries – Late-Blooming Talent

However, a lot of factors have to align for him to become a teammate of Max Verstappen at Red Bull Racing. Mercedes, on the other hand, might see de Vries return in the future.

Despite critics suggesting that Nyck de Vries is too old to make his debut in Formula 1 at the age of 28, history has shown that drivers used to regularly debut in their mid-20s.

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Mark Webber is an example of a late bloomer, and Red Bull could be de Vries’s next step if he delivers solid results and a smidgeon of luck.

The current incumbent of Red Bull’s second seat, Sergio Perez, may be a stumbling block, but de Vries could outshine his teammate at AlphaTauri and prove capable of out-pacing Perez and Ricciardo. De Vries has proven he belongs in the pinnacle of motorsport and could use AlphaTauri as a stepping stone to the very top.

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