The surprising turn of events that has occurred in recent days has caused an earthquake in Alpine. But the signing of Fernando Alonso by Aston Martin will only be effective in 2023, so the driver and the team will have to understand each other in the remaining 9 races.
It seemed that the relationship between Fernando Alonso and Alpine, as an institution, was optimal. However, following the Spanish driver’s surprising move to Aston Martin for 2023, things may not really be as good as both sides appeared.
And it is that it does not seem logical to think that what happened with Alonso -and that has also affected Oscar Piastri- has originated exclusively from a disagreement in the duration of the Spaniard’s next contract.
But regardless of the reasons, the truth is that both Fernando Alonso and Alpine are going to have to understand each other between now and the end of the season, as there are still nine races of this year’s Formula 1 World Championship to go.
Otmar Szafnauer and his confidence in Alonso
This question has been answered by Otmar Szafnauer, who attended a group of media after confirming the signing of Fernando Alonso by Aston Martin.
And, although it may surprise some, the Alpine team manager has made his conviction very clear that the two-time world champion will perform at his best for the good of the Anglo-French team.
“I have no worries for the rest of the season, the objective is clear.. We want to be fourth in the constructors’ championship, because the third is difficult, “said Szafnauer.
The Romanian engineer considers that Fernando Alonso is «a professional, a competitor, when he puts on his helmet he does it to the best of his ability. On his head, there is nothing else when the visor of the helmet is lowered. I am the same, I want the best possible result always.
Although it is unlikely that Fernando Alonso will remain involved in the development of this year’s car and, above all, in 2023, Szafnauer is confident that the Spanish driver will do everything possible to help the team on the circuits.
“Improvements come very quickly, we have another one in Spa and we will continue to improve the car until the end of the year. Fernando understands this and will work just as hard as Esteban to maximize the car’s performance.”Szafnauer concluded.
Alpine better than Aston Martin
The current director of Alpine held that same position at Aston Martin and at Racing Point, an organization that preceded the one that today officially represents the British brand.
Last winter, disagreements with Lawrence Stroll related to the signing of Martin Whitmarsh led to his departure and subsequent transfer to Alpine, so Otmar Szafnauer knows both teams well.
And, how could it be otherwise, Szafnauer points out that he is more confident in what Alpine will be able to achieve than in what Aston Martin can offer Fernando Alonso during the duration of his new contract.
“I know both teams well, because I spent 12 years in the other, I know the people there even better than the one here.. I know they signed some good people in December, apart from Dan Fallows from Red Bull and Eric Blandin from Mercedes,” Szafnauer admitted.
“I know what they’re trying to do. Both teams have a lot of potential, but today Alpine performs at a much higher level.. In the short term, we will be at this level or even better, there are plans to improve and win in 100 races, “said the Alpine director.
«We hired 75 more people in strategic areas, and we have improved some tools, such as the simulator. I trust that we can do better than the team that Fernando goes to in the time that he is going to be there »he concluded.
Font: car and driver
Photos: Alpine F1 Team
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