De Vries wins driver of day accolades as late replacement stars for Williams in Monza

Dutchman Nyck de Vries won many expert punters plaudits across social media and television as the Williams F1 team driver, partnered by Acronis, finished a brilliant 9th at the Italian Grand Prix in Monza.

De Vries, who was crowned 2021 Formula E World Champion, is test and reserve driver for the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 team who also supply the power unit for Williams.

Having also participated in free practice for the Aston Martin team, he was drafted into the Williams seat at short notice before Saturday qualifying after regular driver Alexander Albon was rushed to hospital for Appendicitis surgery.

Qualifying an already impressive 13th on the grid before race day on raw pace alone, De Vries was further elevated to 9th on the grid at the start subject to grid penalties for rival drivers.

Yet even as the established drivers made their way through the field, a superb strategy from the team and expert tyre management enabled him to hold off Zhou Guanyu by the finish.

“I’m feeling really good about today and think it was crucial to get the start right and a clean run into lap one,” commented De Vries on his team’s official press release. “I got into a DRS train which helped to stick with the pack, however I think the pace was really good and we made a good call on strategy and tyre management.

“Driver of the day makes me so happy and I’m very pleased and thankful that I got given the opportunity and I grabbed it with both hands.”

Importantly for his Williams Racing team, De Vries’ points finish marks the fourth time that the famous name has finished in the points this season. And with driver seats up for grabs, it does him no chance of bagging an important role for 2023.

“It was a great day for the team and whilst grid penalties played in our favour, ultimately, we did a great race so I’m very happy for everyone in the team and for myself,” added De Vries. “Hopefully I will get a shot next year, but this is definitely a dream come true and I’m very impressed with what we’ve done in short notice, so I’ll go enjoy it now.”


Prominent once again on the nose of the car and on the front wing endplates this season are the team’s official cyber protection partner Acronis. Williams Racing uses Acronis technology to add extra layers of protection to its IT infrastructure, protecting hundreds of servers and endpoint devices.

During the 2021 season and continuing this year, Acronis opened up an exciting #TeamUp Program, giving new and existing service providers the opportunity to support sports partnerships, join the sports ecosystem, attend races and enjoy amazing sports marketing benefits. To find out more, please visit Cyber Protection for global sports – Acronis

Williams Racing.
Spanish Grand Prix, Friday 20th May 2022. Barcelona, Spain.

Fraser Masefield

Sports news and features writer, web editor and author.