Franz Tost Reveals Which Red Bull Juniors Could Join F1 as Test Drivers in 2022

Published 10/02/2021, 1:15 PM EDT
Formula One F1 – Italian Grand Prix – Autodromo Nazionale Monza, Monza, Italy – September 10, 2021 Red Bull’s Sergio Perez during practice REUTERS/Jennifer Lorenzini


Over the years, Red Bull forged a reputation for giving young drivers a chance to shine in F1. With AlphaTauri as their sister team, the energy drink brand find themselves in a unique position where they have four seats on offer.

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While Red Bull is a team known to challenge for world championships, AlphaTauri aren’t quite on the same boat. One often finds a driver joining AlphaTauri wanting to race for Red Bull someday in their F1 careers.

This season, the Italian team have a strong driver pairing in Pierre Gasly and Yuki Tsunoda. However, the future is always round the corner in F1, and F2 currently has a wide pool of talent. During a recent interview, AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost spoke about the possibility of including two F2 competitors as test drivers for next season.

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Franz Tost believes Red Bull juniors Juri Vips and Liam Lawson could be F1 test drivers in 2022

Vips currently sits in sixth place in the F2 championship, while Lawson is two places behind the Estonian. Both drivers belong to the Red Bull academy, and look likely to be the Austrian outfit’s future.

 

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In an interview with Sport1, Tost admitted Vips and Lawson will compete in the young driver test in Abu Dhabi. He said, “Basically, good drivers from Formula 2 follow. With us, they are Liam Lawson and Juri Vips, who will also contest the Young Driver Test in Abu Dhabi. Lawson with us, Vips with Red Bull Racing. Formula 2 is very busy this year.”

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Tost mentions more drivers as “the future”

The 65-year-old also mentioned Robert Shwartzman, Theo Pourchaire and F2 championship leader Oscar Piastri as the future.

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BARCELONA, SPAIN – FEBRUARY 28: Scuderia AlphaTauri Team Principal Franz Tost looks on in the paddock during Day Three of F1 Winter Testing at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on February 28, 2020 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

In addition, he also mentioned how limited seats make it a struggle to introduce young drivers in F1. “There were always too few places in Formula 1,” said the Austrian. “At the moment there are 20 cars and they have the best drivers. At Red Bull, we give the youngsters test drives in older cars. 

“Another alternative would be to let them drive another season in the F2 – or in the DTM or Indycar. You can also create the path from these series. If you have the right talent, you will end up in Formula 1 at some point.”

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The future certainly looks bright for Red Bull. Whether Vips and Lawson get their maiden opportunity next year in F1 or not, only time will tell.

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Sanket Nair

784 articles

Sanket Nair is an F1 Author at EssentiallySports. A Sports Management graduate, he is a huge fan of Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo and hopes to see Red Bull break Mercedes' dominance and win the World Championship soon. Sanket has been hooked to the sport ever since he watched the battle for the 2010 World Championship go down to the wire at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

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