Frederic Vasseur says he will not block Laurent Mekies from moving to AlphaTauri, but they are yet to reach an agreement with Red Bull.
Ever since the announcement was made for Mekies to become the new F1 team principal of AlphaTauri, there has been question mark over his joining date. The news was leaked in the media which forced for an early official announcement.
That started the questioning scenario where Ferrari intended for a negotiation with Red Bull/AlphaTauri over the release of Mekies. In return, the Italian manufacturer are eyeing engineers/mechanics and few meetings have taken place to discuss those as well.
While Christian Horner notes that there won’t be any hostage situation from both sides, Vasseur too has stated that he won’t block Mekies from going to AlphaTauri. There is still no joining date as the discussions continue on behind the scenes.
“Laurent is still linked with us and we have to find a deal with Red Bull and AlphaTauri for this, but I think we’ll do it in the proper way, because I don’t want to block Laurent,” said Vasseur. “I know him and I have a huge respect for Laurent. And even if we are competitors that at the end of the day I think we have to find a fair solution for everybody.”
Even Mekies knows the situation and for now, he is representing Ferrari until he is part of the F1 team. He is hoping for a comfortable decision which helps all the parties involved. “The truth is the decision has not been made yet, so until that point,” he said.
“As you say, I’m wearing red and as a result I’m committed 100% to Ferrari and to represent Ferrari in these sort of conditions. I’m now wearing the red shirt, so it’s not something I’m going to come up with very much details. What is fair to say is that the reason why there is still discussion is probably also because people needed more time to talk to each other.
“That’s what they are doing now. I’m confident that gives them a little bit of time, and we’ll find a solution that will make all parties comfortable,” summed up Mekies. When asked why he didn’t wish to stay at Ferrari in the Vasseur era, the Frenchman did not wish to dive into the details of his movements and wished to keep it with himself for now.
“I’m sure you will understand that this is probably where I stop in the level of details I can give you, at least for now,” he said. “I think it’s very important that we are all very competitive people and please believe me that when we come to a racetrack with a given shirt, we only think to that team and to that race weekend.
“And that’s how we have agreed to go forward for the time being and therefore I think your questions will be for a little bit later,” summed up Mekies. While there shouldn’t be a problem but the current AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost isn’t expecting himself to remain in the position even if the Frenchman doesn’t start on time.
“I mean, no, no, we have Peter,” he said. “If Laurent is not coming at least we have Peter Bayer and therefore, I expect Laurent is coming then, early or later, at least at the beginning of January, the rest we will see.”
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