Liam Lawson holds the role of Red Bull Racing’s reserve driver after stepping up to the position midway through 2022. He participated in an FP1 session for Red Bull, and two for AlphaTauri, and this year is switching to Super Formula after finishing third in Formula 2. Red Bull Racing can also turn to Daniel Ricciardo, who re-joined as a third driver and ambassador, as well as long-term tester Sebastien Buemi.
Ferrari has two reserve drivers in the shape of Antonio Giovinazzi and Robert Shwartzman. Giovinazzi spent three years racing in Formula 1 for Alfa Romeo and has been part of the Ferrari stable since 2017. He will also contest this year’s World Endurance Championship with the manufacturer. Shwartzman, runner-up to Piastri in Formula 2 in 2021, will compete in GT World Challenge alongside his Formula 1 duties.
Mercedes has a reserve driver with recent race experience after recruiting Mick Schumacher. The German spent 2021/22 competing for Haas but his contract was not renewed for 2023 after the team opted to sign compatriot Hülkenberg. Schumacher is set to attend all grands prix in his new role as back-up to Lewis Hamilton and George Russell.
Australian Formula 2 star as a reserve driver? For 2022 and Piastri, read 2023 and Jack Doohan. The son of MotoGP icon Mick stepped into the role towards the end of last year amid the Piastri saga and ticked Alpine’s box for the FP1 runs and young driver test. Doohan formally takes on the role this year and will remain in Formula 2, where he last year finished sixth.
McLaren has no reserve driver per se but will lean on Mercedes and Aston Martin – the latter making their duo available for the opening 15 grands prix. That length of time coincides with the conclusion of the IndyCar season, after which Alex Palou will be available – having previously been confirmed as part of McLaren’s roster of drivers.
Robert Kubica’s three-year stint as Alfa Romeo’s reserve driver has come to an end and in his place is Théo Pourchaire. The Frenchman has finished runner-up in Formula 3 and Formula 2 during his junior career and is still only 19 years old. He will contest a third Formula 2 season alongside his Alfa Romeo responsibilities.
Aston Martin lost its capable stand-in after Haas recruited Hülkenberg but in his place has appointed Felipe Drugovich and Stoffel Vandoorne. Formula 2 champion Drugovich amplified his Formula 1 experience with an FP1 run and test outing in late 2022 while Vandoorne, who contested 41 grands prix with McLaren, has title-winning pedigree from Formula E. Drugovich is the nominated stand-in for Lance Stroll if he cannot recover from his current injuries.
If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. That seems to be Haas’ motto towards its reserve driver as Pietro Fittipaldi stays for a fifth season. The US-born Brazilian started two grands prix in late 2020 after Romain Grosjean’s accident and has made a handful of FP1 and test appearances since for Haas.
Williams is yet to appoint a reserve driver for 2023.