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Alfa Romeo announce Zhou to stay on for second F1 season

Zhou Guanyu has earned a second season in Formula 1 with Alfa Romeo after a strong rookie campaign.

Zhou Guanyu will remain an Alfa Romeo Formula 1 driver for a second season in 2023 the team have announced. Zhou became the first ever Chinese driver to race in F1 when he made his debut in the Bahrain Grand Prix this year, alongside 10-time race winning teammate Valtteri Bottas. The former F2 racer enjoyed a solid season alongside Bottas although reliability problems have prevented him from scoring at the same rate as the Finn, with Alfa beginning to fall back from the midfield despite a strong start to the campaign overall. As well as in 10th in Bahrain, Zhou banked eighth in Canada and was 10th at Monza last time out to leave him 17th in the standings after 16 races. The biggest moment of his Grand Prix career thus far was in the British Grand Prix, where he was flipped over by George Russell in the Mercedes and vaulted the tyre barrier at the start. Fortunately he escaped un-injured and was fit to race in Austria a week later.

What does Zhou say?

With Alfa confirming Zhou for a 2023 seat, it means there are just three remaining on the 2023 grid. The second seats at Alpine, Haas and Williams are yet to be filled, and although Pierre Gasly is officially confirmed at AlphaTauri for 2023, it is expected he fills the Alpine slot if Red Bull can draft a replacement in for him. "I am happy and grateful to Alfa Romeo for the opportunity to be part of the team for another season," explained Zhou in a team statement. "Making it to Formula 1 was a dream come true and the feeling of competing for the first time in a race will live with me forever: the team has been incredibly supportive, welcoming me from day one and helping me adapt to the most complex series in motorsport. "There is more that I want to achieve in this sport and with the team, and the hard work we have put together since the start of the year, it is just the first step towards where we want to be next season. :"here is still a lot to learn, a lot to develop but I am confident in our work: I am looking forward to the next chapter of our story together."

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