After spending last year on the sidelines, Oscar Piastri is set to make his F1 debut with McLaren and admitted feels he is hungrier than ever to get racing.
With no vacant seats available for the 2022 F1 campaign, Piastri spent the baulk of the season in the Alpine garage as their reserve driver before signing a controversial deal with McLaren to replace Daniel Ricciardo.
“I think so. You know, obviously, as a racing driver, I want to be racing all the time. So taking a year out of racing was not ideal,” said Piastri to selected media, including Total-Motorsport.com.
“I tried to make the most of what I had, trying to learn as much as I could about the F1 environment outside of driving and trying to learn as much as I could.
“I learned some things that I wouldn’t necessarily have learnt anywhere elsewhere last year, but definitely, I’m looking forward to getting stuck in again and going racing.”
Element of rust for return to racing
Although Piastri has managed plenty of testing for McLaren over the winter, he hasn’t raced competitively since clinching the F2 title in December 2021.
The lack of racing has simplified his and the team’s expectations for the season ahead, as Piastri admits there will be an element of rust at the beginning of the season.
“I think in terms of results, there’s not really any set expectations; obviously, I’m going to try and learn as much as I can. It depends on where we are as a team,” said Piastri.
“For me, learning as much as I can obviously getting up to speed as quickly as I can (as) there’s going to be an element of rust there at the beginning.
“So, trying to get back up to speed there and just putting the right processes in place to try to fast-track my learning. And then whatever results come is a bonus.”