One of the standout performances from 2022 came in the form of Nyck de Vries making his Formula 1 debut at the Italian Grand Prix.
Substituting in for regular driver Alex Albon who was suffering from tonsillitis, the Dutchman already ran in an FP1 session for Williams earlier in the year at the Spanish Grand Prix.
This was followed by practice runs with Mercedes at Paul Ricard and Aston Martin at Monza, which meant De Vries had enough experience in 2022 machinery before his race debut.
Following the impressive run to P9 and scoring points for the team, fellow compatriot Max Verstappen revealed in an interview on Viaplay that he told De Vries to contact Red Bull Advisor, Helmut Marko, about a seat for 2023.
"I told him call Helmut," said Verstappen. "I saw Helmut after the race, he was very happy and impressed. And if you call him at the right time..."
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Verstappen: When Helmut thinks 'You need to be in my car' then he will sign you
After being told by Verstappen to contact Marko, De Vries then had a meeting at his office in Graz, Austria.
This is where the details of him taking over from Pierre Gasly at AlphaTauri was discussed.
At that stage Gasly was in talks with Alpine over replacing Fernando Alonso, but Marko was still determined to get De Vries on the grid, according to Verstappen.
He explained: "Nyck already had talks with other teams, but that's also the nice thing about Red Bull and Helmut. When he thinks 'You need to be in my car' then he will sign you up because it can happen very quickly.
"I remember he called him on the Tuesday after the race and then he had to go there on Wednesday or Thursday. He was already in Graz and there he had another chat with Helmut, and I think that went very well.
"At that time Pierre was also still going through Alpine a lot, so there was still a lot of things going on and he couldn't immediately sign."
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