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Nyck de Vries

Why De Vries had to 'adapt' to becoming full-time F1 driver

Nyck de Vries might have had extensive experience in motorsport prior to his F1 debut, but the AlphaTauri driver has still likened his rookie season to the "first day at school".

De Vries Bahrain
To news overview © Red Bull Content Pool

Nyck de Vries admits that he has still had to "adapt" to certain aspects of life as an F1 driver, despite being more experienced than some other rookies.

The AlphaTauri driver is in his first full-time season in Formula 1, after previously substituting for an unwell Alex Albon at Williams in the 2022 Italian Grand Prix.

De Vries also previously served as a reserve driver for Mercedes, as well as taking part in Free Practice 1 sessions for teams including Aston Martin.

Prior to entering the sport in 2023, the Dutchman won a championship in Formula E as well as competing in other categories of motorsport, but he acknowledges that some aspects of becoming a full-time F1 driver have been "different".

De Vries on 'first day at school' feeling

"In terms of the work we do with the team, and in my preparation towards the racing, I would say it's not miles away from what I was used to in professional racing," de Vries told media, including RacingNews365.com.

"But still, when you go through the experience for the first time, it is a bit different. You need to adapt, and it does still feel like a first day at school kind of thing, let's put it that way.

"Of course, I've been around for some time, so you kind of know what to expect and you at least know how teams operate and work.

"But then when you actually run through the process, it's always a bit different."

Schedule not 'straightforward', says de Vries

The 2023 F1 calendar features a record-breaking 23 races. When asked if the schedule is particularly tough for rookies, de Vries admitted that there are elements of this that are challenging.

"I think that's a valid point," the 28-year-old said.

"Personally, I'm not very conscious about it, because it is the way it is and we've got to make the most of it. But it's certainly not straightforward.

"Obviously, especially in night races, the track temperatures fluctuate so much, and then in practice you run different fuel levels, different tyres and then different engine modes.

"Suddenly, in qualifying, you turn up with something that is a little unknown at the time."

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