A number of 2023 drivers, including Oscar Piastri (pictured), Fernando Alonso and Nico Hulkenberg, are getting their first taste of their new teams after switching for the Abu Dhabi test.
Teams are running for one final day this year as part of a Pirelli tire test, but unlike previous tests, they are allowed to run two cars at once. One must do tire testing while the other is a young driver test, meaning multiple race drivers are involved.
While the likes of Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull have their usual drivers sharing a car and youngsters on the other side of the garage, the likes of McLaren are able to run their full 2023 driver line-up for the first time as Piastri fulfills the rookie role alongside Lando Norris.
Fernando Alonso officially joins Aston Martin on January 1. Mark Sutton/Motorsport Images
Alpine have Pierre Gasly in the car alongside Jack Doohan, while the driver Gasly is replacing, Fernando Alonso,. Alonso is running in an unbranded car due to contractual commitments as he’s technically on loan from Alpine and therefore unable to promote the Aston Martin brands. Alonso will hand over to Lance Stroll at some stage in the afternoon, with Felipe Drugovich testing in the other car.
There’s also a full 2023 line-up in place at AlphaTauri, where Nyck de Vries gets his first running with his new team alongside Yuki Tsunoda, and at Williams as Logan Sargeant –– and Alex Albon carry out duties.
For Haas, Nico Hulkenberg is getting his first running with the team before his return to F1 next year, carrying out the tire test duties while Pietro Fittipaldi counts as the rookie in the second VF-22.