De Vries poised to make Mercedes F1 appearance, but will he replace Hamilton or Russell?

Nyck de Vries replaced Alex Albon at Williams for FP1 at the Spanish Grand Prix and finished above Nicholas Latifi on the timesheets.

Nyck de Vries replaced Alex Albon on Friday morning at the Spanish Grand Prix, after being used in FP1 by Williams Racing.

De Vries’ appearance for the team came as the Dutchman was taking part in one of two mandated young driver sessions that all teams are obligated to complete this season.

The Dutchman performed brilliantly in the morning session at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, even managing to finish above under-pressure Williams driver Nicholas Latifi.

De Vries completed 28 laps under the Spanish sun, however, he believes he could’ve done even better during the session.

“I was very pleased with my job, but I just know where we are with both cars,” said De Vries following FP1.

“I know that I went out very early on the C3 [tyre]. I had quite a lot of traffic from Valtteri [Bottas] in Sector 3.

“I just felt like there was more in there, and also knowing what we have on both sides. Everyone is obviously bringing upgrades, but I think there was more to come.

“But from my personal side, it was okay,” concluded the Dutch driver.

The reigning Formula E World Champion is all but set for a second FP1 appearance later in the year, but interestingly not for Williams.

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Dave Robson, Head of Vehicle Performance at Williams, indicated that it wasn’t in the team’s plans to use De Vries again this season.

Williams test driver Roy Nissany will most likely be used by the British team when they decide to complete the second mandated session.

De Vries second FP1 session will come later in the year, with the Mercedes F1 Team.

De Vries has run for Mercedes in the past, and the Dutchman is also their official reserve driver.

The Silver Arrows are yet to announce when De Vries will be used, or who he will replace for an FP1 session.

Rumours are continuing to circulate that De Vries could be in-line for a permanent switch to Formula 1 mid-season, with Latifi becoming ever more likely to be sacked by Williams.

Latifi did, however, have his best race of the season so far in Spain. The Canadian finished in sixteenth place, ahead of his team-mate.