Guanyu Zhou Beats Oscar Piastri – He’s the First Chinese Driver in F1
China beats Australia for last 2022 Formula 1 seat
Two big Formula 1 appointments were announced recently. In a shocker, Guanyu Zhou of China has surpassed Australia’s Oscar Piastri to become the first-ever Chinese driver in Formula 1. Alfa Romeo’s F1 team has named Zhou as a racer for the 2022 campaign. He will make his debut in Bahrain at the season opener of the next season.
Guanyu Zhou with Alfa Romeo
When he joins Alfa Romeo Racing, Zhou will replace Antonio Giovinazzi and race alongside teammate Valtteri Bottas. Alfa Romeo Racing believes that Zhou’s track experience and youthful edge will help the team to do well in the wake of a new set of technical regulations and the game-changing 2022 car.
The Team Principal at Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen, Frédéric Vasseur, said: “We are proud of our line-up for 2022 and we are confident Zhou will form a very successful partnership with Valtteri.”
Talking about his inclusion in Alfa Romeo Racing, Zhou said, “To be the first-ever Chinese driver in Formula 1 is a breakthrough for Chinese motorsport history. I know a lot of hopes will be resting on me, and, as ever, I will take this as motivation to become better and achieve more.”
The appointment of Zhou and not Piastri is a shock for many people, especially Australians. The latter has been named as a reserve driver for Alpine F1. Speculations are rife that Zhou won the race to be a part of Formula 1 thanks to money talks.
After all, Piastri leads in Formula 2 championship with 178 points while Zhou is 36 points behind him. Most Aussies felt angry and betrayed by this decision. Piastri was better suited for Formula 1 as he won the F3 championship in 2020 and had an impressive debut season in F2. He has won three races, out of which two were features races. He also has seven other top-five finishes from the 17 races to date.
In comparison, Zhou has been in F2 for a couple of years. He finished 7th in 2019 and 6th in 2020. He has only three wins to his name in 2021 and just five other top-five finishes.
So, it is clear that Piastri was more deserving of the last seat in Formula 1. It seems that Zhou was selected by Alfa Romeo Racing just because he is Chinese, and people want more inclusivity these days.
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