AlphaTauri Team Principal Franz Tost has backed Isack Hadjar to receive a full-time Formula 1 seat in the future.
Hadjar made his F1 weekend debut with the Red Bull sister squad in Mexico, substituting for Yuki Tsunoda.
Red Bull boasts one of the most successful junior programmes and has promoted multiple drivers to F1 throughout its existence.
However, AlphaTauri has had to look outside the programme more recently to fill seats, with Nyck de Vries drafted in for the first half of the season before being replaced by Daniel Ricciardo.
Reflecting on Hadjar's FP1 outing, Tost told media including RacingNews365.com: “I don't hope that this was his best day of the life, I hope that he wins races and championships.
“This shouldn't be the best day of his life. No, he did a good job, I must say. We were all impressed by him.
“He was calm when he went out, he was out with three different sets of tyres, the prototype tyre, the Medium and the Soft.
“And with all these different compounds, I must say that he really did a good job.
“His technical feedback was also quite good, because if you compare it to the data there is a very high correlation.
“We are really impressed and I think that he will be soon in Formula 1.”
Viewed by others:
FP1 run should be motivating, not daunting
Prior to the FP1 outing, Hadjar had never driven an F1 car before marking an unusual level of confidence from the team as rookies are often provided private tests before their weekend debuts.
The 19-year-old ended the session in 17th place.
“It should be motivating, not daunting,” Tost added of Hadjar's run in the car. “I like drivers who are optimistic or looking forward.
“You know, they never should take this pressure on them. I said to Isack, 'just enjoy driving your first time in a Formula 1 car, don't care about anything, and go for it'.
“There is no pressure or nothing. If the driver loads the pressure on himself, he will not compete well.”