FIA side with McLaren over Alpine in Oscar Piastri saga as Aussie replaces axed Ricciardo

OSCAR PIASTRI’s contract battle between McLaren and Alpine has been settled ahead of the Dutch Grand Prix.

FIA side with McLaren over Alpine in Oscar Piastri saga as Aussie replaces axed Ricciardo

Oscar Piastri’s F1 future has been confirmed (Image: Getty) SUBSCRIBE Invalid email

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Oscar Piastri will drive for McLaren next season after the Contract Recognition Board (CRB) said it was the only valid deal with the youngster. The CRB confirmed Piastri was free to race for the team in 2023 and 2024 as per their agreement. 

FIA side with McLaren over Alpine in Oscar Piastri saga as Aussie replaces axed Ricciardo

Alpine and McLaren have fought for the Australian (Image: Getty)

The report said: “The only contract to be recognised by the Board is the contract between McLaren Racing Limited and Mr Piastri dated 4 July 2022. Mr Piastri is entitled to drive for McLaren Racing Limited for the 2023 and 2024 seasons.” The CRB met on Monday to look into Piastri’s case and decide whether he would drive for Alpine or McLaren next season.

However the board’s verdict had to be made within 72 hours meaning the decision should have been revealed on Thursday evening. There was uncertainty in the paddock on Friday morning but the decision came in just before FP2.

On making the announcement, Piastri said: “I’m extremely excited to be making my F1 debut with such a prestigious team as McLaren and I’m very grateful for the opportunity that’s been offered to me.

“The team has a long tradition of giving young talent a chance, and I’m looking forward to working hard alongside Lando to push the team towards the front of the grid. I’m focused on preparing for my F1 debut in 2023 and starting my F1 career in papaya.”

READ MORE: Alpine accused of breaking promises as Piastri drama takes new twist

 

The Australian is highly-rated after winning the Formula 3 and Formula 2 titles in consecutive seasons.

Zak Brown, CEO of McLaren Racing added: ” In Lando and Oscar we have a young, exciting F1 line-up with a huge amount of potential, standing us in good stead to achieve our future ambitions. Oscar is an exciting addition to the McLaren family, and we look forward to seeing him grow with our F1 team.”

The disagreement emerged after Alpine announced Piastri would drive for the team next season hours after Fernando Alonso confirmed his departure to Aston Martin. 

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FIA side with McLaren over Alpine in Oscar Piastri saga as Aussie replaces axed Ricciardo

Otmar Szafnauer had felt Alpine would secure Piastri (Image: Getty)

But, Piastri posted a social media message claiming Alpine had made the statement without his permission and declined the offer. It later emerged Piastri was already in talks with McLaren who then confirmed they had axed Daniel Ricciardo. 

Alpine boss Otmar Szafnauer has been critical of Piastri’s decision to not sign for the team, claiming the youngster lacked integrity. Over the Belgian Grand Prix weekend, Szafnauer also revealed he expected the CRB to side with the French manufacturer.

Alpine conceeded they had lost the battle after the decision this afternoon in a social media statement. 

Posting on Twitter, the team said: “BWT Alpine F1 Team thanks the Contract Recognition Board (CRB) for convening on Monday and we acknowledge the decision they have made. We consider the matter closed on our side and will announce our full 2023 driver line-up in due course.”

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