Alpine F1 trio weigh in on the driver situation post the Lewis Hamilton situation, as to where they stand going into 2025 and beyond.
The Hamilton news has certainly opened up quite many avenues and potential seat on offer. There is also an empty one at Red Bull as of now while Ferrari and McLaren are sealed. This has left many F1 drivers to see opportunities for themselves.
The Alpine pair of Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon are in the fray too. While the former is early in his deal with the F1 team, the latter has spent several years already. And has some links with Mercedes, which could open up potential discussions.
But both are not dwelling too much on beyond 2024 on the public front yet. They want to excel this year and let things unfold behind the scenes. Also, Alpine chief Bruno Famin notes about it being too early, while adding that he is happy with his drivers.
Hamilton news, bad for Sainz –
Gasly: “I think it is great for the sport. It is a big move you see, most successful driver of our sport leaving Mercedes after they had the most successful collaboration ever between the driver and the team in F1. It was a bit of a now or never, I think Lewis has come towards the end of his career and he grabbed the opportunity and Ferrari did as well. It is going to be interesting to follow that up. I was aware of some talks with Ferrari. What’s fair in F1, first of all? I think Carlos is a great driver. Lewis is a fantastic driver, the best of all time. So, on that side of things, I think there was an opportunity on both sides. I think Ferrari and Lewis took it together. Obviously, it leaves Carlos in a trickier situation. It’s not easy.”
Own situation –
Gasly: “Obviously, there are discussions ongoing, lets see where it takes us. But my focus at the moment is just start of the year to do a good job with the team, seeing the potential of the car, see what we can do with it. We will see more in the next couple of weeks. As a driver, I want to fight at the top of Formula 1, and that is what I’m working towards every single day, trying to chase every single thousandth of a second for a win because I want to fight for wins. I’ve been fighting all my life with Max, Charles, Lando, George and all these guys, that is where I want to go. I really hope we manage to get to that potential with Alpine and we manage to get up there.”
Hamilton news, crazy year ahead –
Ocon: “I think the Lewis news surprised everyone for sure. Nobody was expecting something like that during the winter because it’s quite calm period normally, but it hasn’t seemed to be a calm period this winter. Not much to be honest, I knew it was going to be a crazy season for sure. I didn’t think it was going to start this early, as in January it is early. But it is going to be all year like that. You guys will have quite a lot of things to write.
Own situation –
Ocon: “It’s clear that I’ve got good links with Mercedes. I’m still managed by them in a way. I’m still Merc junior, even if I’m not that junior anymore. My focus goes into the racing, into the plan that we have with Alpine. I need to focus on what’s on track, which is the most important. If that goes well, there will always be talks, rumours and the things that you guys love. That’s what’s happening when you do a good job.”
Alpine retaining, driver market –
Famin: “First, we are happy with our drivers, for sure. We are happy with them. They are both still young and very experienced, and we are happy with them. I think we have a lot to do in developing the team, in developing the car, and of course, we are looking at the market. We are talking to them regularly on the future, in our future. We share quite a lot of things about the future, and we will see in due time. But right now, there is no real point, no real emergency, but the relation with them is good. I like very much the way we work together, and we talk together.”
Here’s Alpine F1 launch
Here’s Alexander Albon, Valtteri Bottas on Mercedes scene
Here’s Pierre Gasly’s winter training
Here’s Pierre Gasly on improvements in F1 not being consistent
Here’s Bruno Famin on bringing culture and mindset change
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