Alpine have reportedly confirmed Bruno Famin as their permanent team principal to replace Otmar Szafnauer, after a difficult year for the team on-track and a summer of upheaval at Enstone.
Famin was placed in temporary charge of Alpine after a cull at the top level, with CEO Laurent Rossi, sporting director Alan Permane and chief technical officer Pat Fry following Szafnauer out of the team.
Famin‘s full-time appointment was reported by L’Equipe after Renault CEO Luca de Meo visited Enstone, and comes just days after Famin had hinted the search for a new F1 chief had slowed.
“I have no delay, because I don’t want to be under pressure,” Famin told the media at the Japanese GP.
“For the time being I’m assessing everything. I think the changes I’ve seen so far are quite good.”
Famin happy with Ocon & Gasly’s performance
Famin had also reassured fans that he’s pleased with the job Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon have done in 2023, despite the challenges.
After finishing fourth in the 2022 constructors’ championship, by a not-insignificant 14 points to McLaren, Alpine have been leapfrogged by both their Woking rivals and Aston Martin in 2023.
So far they sit sixth having managed less than half of McLaren‘s points total and just over a third of Aston Martin‘s, often finding themselves stuck in no-man’s land at the tail end of the top 10.
They’ve even managed two podiums plus a sprint top-three, all richly deserved, but have also failed to finish nine grand prix.
Ocon and Gasly joined forces for the 2023 season against the backdrop of a bitter feud from karting that had reportedly continued to all the way to F1, but have been a solid driver pairing aside from colliding at the Australian Grand Prix.
“On the track side, as I said, I’m very happy with the drivers the job they are doing the spirit we have,” Famin added. “Of course, the main point will be now to really see how we can get the same kind of spirit in the factories.
“And that’s really the point I’m focusing on. It’s not a question of [a] person, it’s a question of having all the people together.”