A Formula 1 racing team called Alpine announced Tuesday that it had added young driver Oscar Piastri to its 2023 lineup. But soon after the team made its announcement, Piastri tweeted that he had agreed to no such thing.
“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,” the Australian driver said. Piastri currently serves as a reserve driver for the team.
As of Tuesday afternoon, Alpine F1 has not responded to Piastri’s claim. The team’s original tweet announcing its 2023 driver lineup is still up.
“Oscar is a bright and rare talent. We are proud to have nurtured and supported him,” said Alpine F1 team principal Otmar Szafnaue in a statement, according to the F1 website.
He continued, “As our reserve driver, he has been exposed to the team at the track, factory and testing where he has shown the maturity, promise and speed to ensure his promotion to our second seat alongside Esteban (Ocon.) Together, we believe the duo will give us the continuity we need to achieve our long-term goal of challenging for wins and championships.”
Alpine F1 had a spot open up in the lineup after two-time world champion Fernando Alonso announced that he’d drive for Aston Martin F1 in 2023. Team officials reportedly believe that Piastri has a “contractual obligation” to drive for them, Sky Sports reported.
That article noted that at least two other teams are in the hunt for the young driver.
“Williams and McLaren have been interested in Piastri if the circumstances were right,” Sky Sports reported.