RaceFans Round-up: Tuesday Aston Martin test “gold” chance

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In the round-up: Fernando Alonso says his first run for Aston Martin today will be a valuable head start on their 2023 season.

In brief

Tuesday test “gold” – Alonso

Alonso will make his debut as an Aston Martin driver in today’s test at the Yas Marina in Abu Dhabi. With only three days of pre-season testing per team allowed next year, he says it is a vital opportunity to adjust to his new surroundings.

“I think it’s going to be important, but it’s going to be more in terms of comfort. What the steering wheel, grip, buttons, pedals, these kind of things.

“Next year we have only one day and a half in Bahrain and then you start a championship. So today, on Tuesday, it’s gold for these kind of things.

Vesti returns to Prema for second F2 season

Mercedes junior driver Frederik Vesti will move from ART to Prema, who he won the 2019 Formula Regional Europe championship with, for his second season in Formula 2 next year. “With his skills and the experience he has matured, we expect him to be a contender and we are determined to support him the best way we can,” said Prema team principal Rene Roisin.

Vesti is due to test Mercedes’ Formula 1 car for the first time today.

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Binotto dismisses “criticism and rumours”

Binotto dismissed “speculation” Ferrari may replace him

Ferrari F1 team principal Mattia Binotto says he and the company’s CEO John Elkann agreed together to release a recent statement dismissing reports his job was in doubt. Some Italian publications claimed Ferrari was planning to replace Binotto with Alfa Romeo team principal Frederic Vasseur.

The “big passion” around Ferrari means there is always “a lot of criticism and rumours,” said Binotto. “That has been true in the past, it’s the situation right now and it will be in the future.

“So obviously when these speculations were out I had a chat with my chairman John Elkann, together we discuss openly what was the best way to move forward and we decided to release a statement. That was maybe the best way to close any speculations and clearly those are speculations, totally, with no foundations.”

Mazepin offers “words of wisdom” to departing drivers

Nikita Mazepin visited his former Formula 2 team Hitech at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and drew attention to his appearance in a social media post offering thoughts for the four drivers who followed him out of Formula 1 at the end of the season.

The post, themed around the five stages of acceptance, included the following thought on ‘anger’: “You blame everyone but yourself for having to leave F1. Particularly the ‘Drive to Survive’ film crew. You watch the races obsessively and yell at the screen.”

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