How de Vries' overdue F1 debut proved him worthy of a 2023 drive
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How de Vries' overdue F1 debut proved him worthy of a 2023 drive

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When Alex Albon was taken ill on the Saturday morning of the Italian Grand Prix, Nyck de Vries was thrust into the limelight at Williams as he made a long-overdue grand prix debut. Having been on the cusp of Formula 1 for so long, his stellar run to the points at Monza demonstrated a tantalising prospect for the 2023 grid

Just as Nyck de Vries settled down for his Saturday morning coffee in the Paddock Club hospitality, his phone buzzed into life. Mercedes strategist James Vowles was on the other end, bearing the news that de Vries was needed at the Williams garage; Alex Albon had been taken to hospital with appendicitis, and so was told to make his way urgently to the British squad's garage.

Quickly kitted out in Williams gear, de Vries had to swiftly get reacquainted with the FW44's systems and layout - after his last outing in the car came in FP1 for the Spanish Grand Prix in May - and then was sent out in FP3 for a cursory bit of seat-time before qualifying. It was a whirlwind debut, all told.

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