Ferrari prima Charles Leclerc says Australia's Oscar Piastri deserves a Formula One spot successful 2022, contempt it appearing apt the Melbourne operator volition beryllium forced to walk a twelvemonth connected the sidelines.
Piastri presently leads the F2 championship, having won the F3 bid past year, and is poised to articulation Leclerc and George Russell arsenic conscionable the 3rd operator to triumph some inferior categories arsenic a rookie.
However, there's lone 1 spot near connected the F1 grid for 2022, with Alfa Romeo yet to denote the individuality of Valtteri Bottas' teammate. Piastri told Wide World of Sports precocious that he's not expecting to get that drive.
"He is simply a very, precise talented driver," Leclerc told the-race.com.
"I evidently look astatine each the F2 races and he's incredibly consistent, ever determination erstwhile helium needs to be.
"It is awesome and helium decidedly has the merit to beryllium successful F1.
"I truly anticipation for him – helium should beryllium successful F1. So, I truly anticipation helium volition beryllium precise soon."
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While Piastri remains the outsider to get the Alfa Romeo drive, the favourite remains the little accomplished Guanyou Zhou, who has taken six years to advancement done F3 and F2. The athletics is keen to ace the Chinese market, and Zhou brings with him a hefty warfare thorax to money the drive.
Reports person emerged this week of hostility betwixt Zhou and Alfa Romeo implicit the magnitude of a imaginable contract, with Zhou pushing for a longer duration than Alfa Romeo is consenting to offer. That stand-off whitethorn alteration Piastri to bargain the seat.
Regardless, it appears the Australian has a tenable fall-back position, with each indications pointing to him signing a trial and reserve operator woody with Alpine for 2022, with a presumption to replacing treble satellite champion Fernando Alonso successful the contention squad successful 2023.
Some person expressed disquiet that Piastri isn't guaranteed a thrust successful F1 if helium wins the F2 title, but that's not a presumption Leclerc would support.
"It is simply a hard one," helium conceded. "I wouldn't bash it arsenic an automatic move, that you triumph F2 and you spell to F1 due to the fact that this wouldn't beryllium just successful immoderate cases.
"But it's besides beauteous wide erstwhile a operator deserves it.
"Oscar it's his archetypal twelvemonth successful F2 and [it looks likely] helium wins it consecutive distant – that's been the lawsuit for different drivers, too.
"I don't deliberation determination needs to beryllium a regularisation for it. It's rather evident that immoderate F2 winners request to get a seat."
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