Nyck de Vries remains confident he can keep his seat amid exit rumours: “It’s not a shock to me”

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Nyck de Vries’s rookie Formula 1 season has gotten off to a rocky start.

The Dutch driver first made headlines during his one-off outing for Williams at Monza last year, where he subbed in for Alex Albon, who had undergone surgery and was unable to drive that weekend. His P9 finish on debut earned him recognition and helped him secure a seat with AlphaTauri for 2023.

However, his start to the season has been shaky, marred by blunders and crashes, notably in Australia and Azerbaijan. So far, de Vries has failed to finish higher than P14 on Sunday, and is currently sitting at the bottom of the drivers’ standings with no points to his name. His teammate, Yuki Tsunoda, on the other hand, has impressed with his ability to consistently score points in the largely underperforming AT04.

The Dutchman’s struggles have inevitably prompted questions about his future in AlphaTauri and, by extension, Formula 1—exacerbated, no doubt, by Red Bull’s tendency to show their drivers the red card if they’re found to be underperforming, sometimes even mid-season, as was the case with Pierre Gasly in 2019.

Photo credit: Red Bull Content Pool

Speaking to the media ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix, de Vries has admitted he’s not surprised by the speculation and exit rumours—but assured he feels confident he will keep his seat for the foreseeable future.

“It’s not a shock to me,”

“I genuinely believe it’s no different than earlier in the season. You’ve always got to perform, you’ve always got to deliver, and it’s been like that throughout my whole career.

“As a driver, you always fight for your survival, and you always need to deliver to continue your career forwards successfully. It’s normal. It’s how it’s been always.

He added that the scrutiny is par for the course, given how high-profile Formula 1 is in the realm of motorsport: “I honestly believe there is no more pressure than there is at any other time. Actually, the only difference in Formula 1 is that you have a lot more noise around it.

“Especially when there is a bit of a gap, there is more speculation and talking. That is probably the biggest difference relative to any other championship. But when it comes to the job, everyone needs to do their job and perform.”

Nevertheless, de Vries accepted he has made “too many mistakes” in the first five rounds.

“I will admit that very openly,” he said.

“I also believe that the pace has been strong at several moments, and that kind of encourages me and gives me confidence. But I haven’t been able to execute at the end and haven’t been able to put it together.”