Ex-Formula 1 team principal Eddie Jordan, has backed Oscar Piastri to partner Max Verstappen at Red Bull after being “blown away” by the Australian’s rookie season so far.

The 22-year-old has now found himself in the top five in consecutive races after a P5 finish at the Hungarian Grand Prix. Meanwhile, McLaren teammate Lando Norris heads into the Belgian Grand Prix this weekend off the back of two consecutive second-place finishes.

The rookie challenged Verstappen for the lead on the opening lap of the Hungarian Grand Prix, but had to settle for second after starting the race from fourth on the grid.

Piastri maintained second place for the duration of the opening stint, but lost position when McLaren prioritised Norris at the first stop.

Rather than singing praises of Norris, it was Piastri’s current run of form that has taken Jordan by surprise.

“The thing that caught my interest yesterday was this guy, Piastri,” Jordan told talkSPORT.

“He’d never been to this track before, maybe once in the junior formulas, and for him to come out and qualify on the second row and race like he did, and race against Max… 

“Be careful where he’s going to go because I think there is big star quality in there, I’m actually blown away with this young kid, so he’d be one of the drivers I’d be looking at to challenge Max in the future.”

(L to R): Tom Stallard (GBR) McLaren Race Engineer with Mark Webber (AUS) Channel 4 Presenter on the grid.
02.07.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 10, Austrian Grand Prix, Spielberg, Austria, Race Day.
– www.xpbimages.com, EMail: requests@xpbimages.com © Copyright: Moy / XPB Images

Jordan also noted that Piastri’s relationship with his manager, Mark Webber, could be integral for a move to Milton Keynes.

The fellow Australian was a key component in the team’s early 2010s domination having raced for the outfit between 2007 and 2013.

Webber also led the push for McLaren to pick up Piastri after it was clear Alpine intended to maintain Fernando Alonso and Esteban Ocon for the 2023 season, much to the dismay of the French marque.

Daniel Ricciardo has emerged amongst the favourites to challenge the incumbent Sergio Perez for the second Red Bull seat, however Jordan believes that if Perez continues to underperform, Webber won’t waste any time in throwing Piastri’s name into the ring.

“He’s managed by my old partner Mark Webber and we saw how he got him into McLaren,” Jordan continued.

“Do not be surprised if there’s a seat available at Red Bull, of course where Mark used to be, don’t be surprised if he [Piastri] is named in front of the public eye in the future.

“I don’t see it [Ricciardo], they had that chance before and Red Bull don’t usually go back in time, they have a very forward vision.

“If there’s a change at Red Bull, Mark Webber has brought this kid [Piastri] on, brought him over from Australia, and what a revelation he’s turned out to be.”

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