Alpine F1's A524 Upgrade Aims to Escape Grid's Rear

Alpine F1’s A524 Upgrade Aims to Escape Grid’s Rear


Alpine F1 introduced upgrades to its A524 in Japan, seeking improved grid positions amidst tire challenges.

Alpine F1 introduced an initial set of updates to its A524 in Japan this weekend, aiming to move away from the back of the grid, a position not in line with the team’s goals. However, when discussing Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly’s satisfaction with the new features, Bruno Famin, the director, mentions that his drivers are currently facing other issues.

“At the moment, they are struggling more with tire temperature management than with assessing the updates, which are not significant anyway. It involves an improved part, mainly the front wing, the development of aerodynamic performance, and weight reduction. For now, they are fairly satisfied, but they have difficulty heating the tires due to the conditions.”

“We are pushing as hard as we can at both our factories. At Viry, for energy management, which is the only way to find performance through regulations. And at Enstone, of course, focusing mainly on aerodynamics and understanding the tires. We are working tirelessly to develop this car.”

Famin also mentioned that the next set of upgrades will be introduced at the “sixth race in Miami,” and revealed that Alpine F1 currently lacks a spare chassis at Suzuka, but this will be addressed at the “next race” in China, a risky situation similar to one experienced by Williams F1.

Famin aims to bring “common sense” to Alpine F1

Serving as the interim team director in the latter part of last season, Famin has now officially taken on the role, outlining his objectives.

“While I am an engineer by training, I see myself more as a manager. I have a solid technical understanding, but I’m not here to make the most technical decisions. My aim is to introduce what I believe is often missing in Formula 1 – common sense! It’s about being realistic, setting the right priorities, and ensuring team cohesion.”

“My job is to restructure the team, essentially. I spent the last two years at Viry. Now, I’m mainly at Enstone, and we need to change our working methods to improve our car development. We need to be more agile, more efficient. So, there’s a lot to do. We’ve started to implement some changes in our technical organization recently. My role is to oversee these changes, to adjust what’s necessary. It involves changing the team’s mindset, motivating the staff, and improving processes and organization.”

Alpine F1 is likely keen on retaining Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly for next season, but given the team’s lackluster performance, the French drivers may have other aspirations. If one were to leave, would Famin consider Jack Doohan as a replacement?

“First, we’re very happy and proud to have Jack in the academy. He’s been trained and will continue to be so this year with a comprehensive testing program. We’re about to start soon, as we need a car, a chassis for this program. And then, let’s say, the driver market will also be very dynamic.”

“For now, I can say we’re pleased with the drivers we have, of course. But we’re prepared for any scenario. We’ve already begun discussions with our current drivers to reach an agreement. And I think Jack needs to do testing to continue his development, to improve. Let’s see what the future holds for us. But it’s a bit early to answer that question.”

Alpine F1's A524 Upgrade Aims to Escape Grid's Rear

Alpine F1’s A524 Upgrade Aims to Escape Grid’s Rear. Alpine F1’s A524 Upgrade Aims to Escape Grid’s Rear

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