Formula E champion Nyck de Vries has reiterated that he is completely focused on the all-electric series as he continues to be linked with a move to Formula 1.
De Vries won the 2019 Formula 2 championship, and spent large parts of his junior career as part of the McLaren young drivers’ programme.
Sadly for the Dutchman, his feeder series success did not cultivate a move to the pinnacle of motorsport, so he turned to the Mercedes EQ Formula E team.
De Vries has won four races with the German manufacturer, and is the reigning champion having taken title glory in 2021.
He and Stoffel Vandoorne brought home the teams’ championship too, and they are also leading the way this season having recorded three wins between them.
While the Belgian has shown consistent form at the head of the standings though, de Vries’ fortune has varied, and he lies sixth having retired from the Jakarta ePrix following contact with Andre Lotterer.
However, the 27-year-old was mightily impressive when he got a practice appearance with Mercedes customer team Williams at the Spanish Grand Prix, out-pacing established Canadian Nicholas Latifi and reminding everyone that he is still every bit the talented racing driver that, somehow, has not received the opportunities yet in F1.
With Latifi desperately struggling to find form this year, de Vries has been linked with his seat for next year or perhaps even before, but his focus is very much on Formula E right now as he seeks to defend both his and Mercedes’ crown.
“I’m highly motivated and committed to achieving what we [are trying] to do,” he explained.
“I really care about our sport and I have a lot of passion for what we do. So regardless of my future, I obviously want to win and defend the championships.
“There are obviously a lot of rumours and people like to talk about it, but I’m living in the present. And we are in Jakarta now, and we still have eight races to go to make sure it comes our way.”
Dave Robson, head of vehicle performance at Williams, expressed his joy at having de Vries in the car in Barcelona, and affirmed that he is deserving of a full-time F1 seat.
“He clearly has what he needs to be to be an absolute top-quality competition driver, he’s worthy of a place on the grid, I think, but so many people are,” he said.
“His pace was there. His ability to understand the tyre and do the out-lap correctly, was really impressive.
“He had some very useful comments on the balance of the car, which agrees quite well with what we’ve heard from the two race drivers.”
If racing in Europe does not work out, IndyCar might well be an option for de Vries after a successful test with Meyer Shank a few months back.