Nyck de Vries met with Red Bull motorsport advisor Helmut Marko in Austria this week and his list of Formula 1 options for 2023 now includes AlphaTauri.
De Vries made a shock F1 debut in the Italian Grand Prix with Williams, as Alex Albon suffered from appendicitis, and impressed with a strong qualifying performance and then a faultless race drive to score points in ninth.
It emerged afterwards that in addition to Williams seriously pursuing De Vries for a full-time drive in 2023, he has also been on Alpine’s radar for some time.
De Vries is among the list of candidates Alpine wants to evaluate in a test in Hungary next week, although he is only an option should the team fail to land Pierre Gasly.
To get Gasly, though, Alpine needs Red Bull to find a replacement for the Frenchman at AlphaTauri.
That was initially envisaged to be IndyCar driver Colton Herta but this effort has been abandoned as Herta is not eligible for an F1 superlicence.
It was suggested that Red Bull had identified an alternative option outside its own driver pool, though – and that has now been confirmed to be De Vries.
The Formula E and Formula 2 champion has admitted in interviews with French publication Auto Hebdo and Dutch talk show Humberto op Zaterdag that he met with Marko this week.
De Vries also reiterated claims he made after his Monza appearance that his future remains out of his control but it now seems increasingly likely he will be on the F1 grid in 2023.
Williams and AlphaTauri appear to be concrete options, although his candidacy at AlphaTauri is obviously contingent on Gasly taking the Alpine drive – unless De Vries thinks he can force his way into the Renault works team by impressing in the test.
If De Vries does join AlphaTauri, alongside Yuki Tsunoda, then Williams will likely turn to a full rookie in 2023.
Williams has been linked with loaning Alpine protege Jack Doohan and also has its own F2 driver Logan Sargeant it has not ruled out promoting.
Sargeant should qualify for an F1 superlicence but if he does not then Doohan may emerge as the frontrunner for that vacancy.