Lewis Hamilton is considering leaving F1 after his controversial world title loss to Max Verstappen and he could be replaced by Mercedes reserve driver Nyck de Vries. All the other F1 stars have already secured their places for the 2022 campaign, so Mercedes may not have many options if they need a driver at short notice.
The most obvious solution would be to look to De Vires, who won the F2 title in 2019 and reigned supreme in Formula E last year.
The 26-year-old is in line for a break from F1 after years of dominating other motorsport events.
But it’s unclear how his comments on Verstappen’s title triumph will affect the Silver Arrows side, as De Vries believes the Dutchman deserved the trophy.
“First of all, I want to emphasize that Max is a very deserving world champion,” said De Vries.
“Everyone, especially me, thinks he deserved it. He had a fantastic season, there’s no doubt about his qualities or that he deserved to win the championship, we all agree there- above.
“It’s something that I absolutely want to acknowledge.
“But on the other hand, Lewis (Hamilton) also had a very good season. On Sunday in Abu Dhabi, he did everything necessary to win the title.
“The race direction made decisions that did not comply with the regulations and surprised him, which ultimately deprived him of the championship.
“It is of course a very bad thing and I don’t think it should be possible in sport. But what can be done? I don’t know.
“I would be lying if I said it wasn’t my goal and my dream,” says De Vries. “Everyone shares this because it’s the pinnacle of our sport.
“Frankly, F1 is bigger than ever, with Netflix, social media and everything.
“At the same time, I’m grateful for everything I have, everything I do, I enjoy the combination of Formula E and endurance racing (in the World Endurance Championship).
“I don’t think I would be out of place on the Formula 1 grid, but there are only 20 places and that’s the reality.”