AlphaTauri shake up: Franz Tost to step down as team principal

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Franz Tost will step down as team principal of AlphaTauri at the end of the 2023 Formula 1 season.

Tost, who has been in charge of the Faenza-based team since Red Bull’s takeover of Minardi, presided over two Grand Prix victories as well as helping give Max Verstappen and Sebastian Vettel their F1 births

But 2023 has been a turbulent start to the season as off-track, Tost was forced to deny rumours of AlphaTauri being sold, whilst also stating he doesn’t trust the team’s engineers.

On-track AlphaTauri have struggled too, with Yuki Tsunoda managing a 10th-place finish in Australia, whilst new teammate Nyck de Vries has struggled to adapt to life in F1.

“First of all, I would like to thank Dietrich Mateschitz, who gave me the incredible opportunity to be Team Principal of Toro Rosso and AlphaTauri for the past 18 years,” said Tost

“It has been a true privilege to lead the Team for such a long period and a great pleasure to work with so many motivated and skilled people who share my passion for F1.”

Mekies and Bayer in 

2022 Belgian GP – Ferrari’s Laurent Mekies | credit: @Scuderia Ferrari Press Office

With Tost now becoming a consultant to the team from 2024, Ferrari’s current sporting director Laurent Mekies will take over as team principal returning him to the team where he started his F1 career.

The Frenchman, who had been linked with a move away from Ferrari, was previously chief race engineer at Toro Rosso before moving to the FIA in 2014.

“I am honoured to take on the role of Team Principal and to return to the Team where I spent a large portion of my early career,” said Mekies

AlphaTauri has all of the ingredients necessary for greater success in the future, and in tandem with Peter, I’m looking forward to making that happen.”

Mekies will run the sporting side of the team whilst former FIA secretary general for sport Peter Bayer takes over as CEO and is set to join later in the year.

“It is a great privilege for me to take on the role of CEO at the Team and working alongside Laurent,” said Bayer. 

AlphaTauri has a fantastic team of people and great infrastructure in Faenza and the UK.

 “I am very much looking forward to building on those key elements to increase performance on and off-track.”

Ed Spencer
Ed Spencer
FIA accredited journalist
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