Half of the money Nyck de Vries made during his disastrous season with Alpha Tauri the previous year must be returned.
Former teammate Jeroen Schothorst filed a lawsuit against the Dutchman a year ago after he was fired by Red Bull mid-season due to subpar play. The real estate million claimed that in exchange for a EUR 250,000 loan, de Vries would give him half of all of his Formula One contracts.
As we revealed in February of last year, Schothorst was actually ordered to pay de Vries’ entire legal defence costs after the judge found against him.
Now that he’s back in Formula E, 28-year-old de Vries expressed optimism that the wind would eventually calm down.
Dutch media, however, now claim that de Vries lost the follow-up lawsuit in an Amsterdam court and is now required to repay the loan plus interest at the rate of three percent annually, as well as giving Schothorst half of his 2023 salary.
For me, it was a matter of principle, Schothorst told the publication Het Financieele Dagblad.
“My mother instilled in me as a child the importance of sticking to agreements. My actions were motivated by my passion for this activity and my empathy for the concerned individual. When no one else wanted to help Nyck at a pivotal point in his career, we did.
Although we would have wanted to come to a settlement, Nyck and his attorney sadly kept turning down our attempts to do so. He continued, “This doesn’t change the fact that I still think highly of Nyck as a driver.”
De Vries’ attorney, Jeroen Bedaux, reportedly told the daily De Telegraaf that the agreement said the cash would be repaid if the driver did not qualify for Formula One by 2022.
Unsurprisingly, De Vries made his racing debut as a stand-in driver for Williams at Monza in 2022. The following year, he secured his first full-time race ride with Alpha Tauri.
This reading of the contract is highly imaginative and does not align with Nyck’s intentions or what he agreed upon when he took out the loan.
De Vries is thinking about filing an appeal right now.
According to Bedaux, De Vries fulfilled his commitments to the best of his knowledge until 2022, and the court has acknowledged this.
De Vries is still considering filing an appeal, the attorney continued, because the fact that he has been forced to return the loan and pay both fixed and variable interest for the first few months of 2023 is in contradiction with what the parties had agreed upon.