Former Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto linked with Alpine for a possible F1 return

Former Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto linked with Alpine for a possible F1 return

Alpine has picked former Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto as their new Formula 1 Team Principal according to reports.

According to French publication L’Auto Journal, Otmar Szafnauer who left Alpine following the Belgian Grand Prix as part of a large exodus of senior staff, has been replaced at the helm by Mattia Binotto who was picked by Renault Groupe CEO Luca de Meo.

Alpine is currently ranking sixth in the Constructor’s standings with 57 points which is 46 points behind their closest rivals McLaren.

Binotto was previously seen in the Silverstone F1 paddock after he was fired by Ferrari and replaced by Fred Vasseur. The Italian allegedly attended an undisclosed Pirelli tyre test in Spa after the Belgian Grand Prix, according to L’Auto Journal.

According to the report, Binotto has already accepted De Meo’s invitation to serve as the Alpine Team Principal; this suggests that his position at Alpine may have a broader focus.

The former Ferrari team principal is said to only be interested in offers that would enable him to reorganize a team as he sees appropriate. However, without any kind of free rein, Binotto would have trouble pulling off such a feat given the current executive hierarchy at Renault.

In September, Binotto is anticipated to begin serving in the position. Bruno Famin will carry on as Interim Team Principal up to that time.

“In France they say that Binotto already has the agreement with Alpine. I wouldn’t be surprised and I wrote it,” Italian journalist Leo Turrini wrote. “I have known Mattia for almost 30 years. He is a smart guy, perhaps undermined by an excess of self-esteem.

“He had the Ferrari in hand for a few years, it was his dream come true. Other dreams, however, have failed, also due to his own responsibility.

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“He made mistakes, but he wasn’t always helped. He trusted the wrong friends and in communication it was a disaster. Some of his utterances cry out for revenge.

“But, for the avoidance of doubt, he is a smart person. If he finds a mentor in De Meo and learns to listen more, he could do very good things.”

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