Toto Wolff heaped praise on Nyck de Vries and said the great Niki Lauda would’ve been proud after a dream debut saw the Dutchman score points just a day after being called up to race. Wolff said nobody could have done a better job than De Vries last weekend who was drafted in to replace Alex Albon who was suffering from appendicitis.
Wolff explained: “I don’t think that anyone else could have possibly done a better job in what he did. Niki would have taken his hat off as a driver. I like him a lot. He is just a fine young man. He is not only fast, as he has shown in the junior categories, but he is also intelligent and a good team player.”
He added: “I think if one of the teams who still have a free seat don’t pick him up now, then I don’t understand the world anymore.” Wolff made his remarks as it emerged Red Bull could be looking to steal the Mercedes reserve star.
De Vries admitted he has held talks with Red Bull chief Helmet Marko as speculation over his F1 future intensifies. Five teams are yet to finalise their driver line-ups for 2023 meaning De Vries still has a chance of securing a race seat.
READ MORE: Nyck de Vries held talks with Red Bull chief Helmut Marko
Earlier this summer, the Mercedes boss said the team were prepared to let him leave the team to pursue his own opportunities. It came after World Touring Car star Tom Coronel suggested De Vries was Wolff’s “insurance policy” if Lewis Hamilton decided to walk away from the sport.
The Dutchman got behind the wheel of a Mercedes in FP1 at the French Grand Prix.