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Alpine Formula One team’s reserve driver Oscar Piastri said that he has not signed a contract and will not be racing for the French outfit in 2023, shortly after the team announced he had been promoted to a race seat.
There appeared to be complete breakdown in communication within the team as less than two hours earlier Alpine said the Australian driver would race alongside Esteban Ocon next year, filling in the spot left by Aston Martin-bound Fernando Alonso.
But Piastri denied the agreement.
“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,” Piastri, the 2021 Formula Two champion, tweeted.
“This is wrong and I have not signed a contract with Alpine for 2023. I will not be driving for Alpine next year.”
Piastri, who joined the Alpine academy in 2020, was named the team’s reserve driver at the start of 2022 season after missing out on an F1 seat.
Reuters has contacted Alpine for comment.
Earlier, Alpine was left surprised after Alonso signed a multi-year deal with Aston Martin, joining as a replacement for four-time F1 champion Sebastian Vettel, who last week announced his retirement from racing at the end of the current season.
Renault-owned Alpine’s team principal Otmar Szafnauer told reporters earlier on Tuesday that he found out about Spaniard Alonso’s move to Aston Martin only when he read the official press release.