Alpine are looking for opportunities to secure F1 seats for their young drivers in other teams.
Alpine F1 team will have no easy task to deal with in the 2021 season. This is because they will be the only engine manufacturer in F1 with no orders, and this of course makes it difficult for Alpine Academy drivers to get placements in other teams. However, the new team believes that working with an F1 team that is not a customer could be a solution, and talks are already underway about such an option.
Alpine today unveiled the five members of the Alpine Academy for 2021: Oscar Piastri, Guanyu Zhou, Christian Lundgaard, Victor Martins, and Caio Collet. Piastri, Zhou, and Lundgaard will race in Formula 2 in 2021. For these three, it will be very difficult to get enough practice time in F1 machinery this year, so that they might already be fit for the 2022 F1 season.
Alpine Academy director, Mia Sharizman, said:
“It doesn’t make it any easier for us not to have a customer team. Nevertheless… we have identified ways and means to ultimately get the drivers to a seat; without a power unit supply, or without any connection, there can still be a collaboration between other teams.”
“I won’t divulge too much, but yes, we are actively in discussions with various teams that are a potential with regards to drivers, not necessarily with connecting of power units and stuff like that. In the case of us, we have Esteban who is with Merc. So for us, we are actively looking into that, and especially this year, when we have three drivers (Piastri, Lundgaard, and Zhou) who are, we would say, on the verge of a role in Formula 1, whether it’s a reserve role or a race role.”