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Alpine joins frantic race to secure Carlos Sainz for 2025

Alpine joins frantic race to secure Carlos Sainz for 2025
© Reuters
Alpine has unexpectedly surfaced as a potential new Formula 1 team for Carlos Sainz from 2025 onwards.

Alpine has unexpectedly surfaced as a potential new Formula 1 team for Carlos Sainz from 2025 onwards.

This past weekend in Barcelona, paddock insiders hinted that the soon-to-depart Ferrari driver is now almost ready to choose between Williams and Audi-Sauber for his next move, with an announcement expected very soon.

Charles Leclerc, frustrated after a collision with his Ferrari teammate on Sunday, indicated that Sainz's aggressive driving could be attributed to his uncertain future in F1.

"For Carlos, it is a very decisive point in his career, and he was certainly motivated to do something special," remarked the Monegasque.

"I was definitely not the right person for him to try it out on."

Meanwhile, in Barcelona, the well-known Flavio Briatore has recently taken on the role of 'executive advisor' to Renault CEO Luca de Meo, who was present at the Circuit de Catalunya.

Briatore will play a part in shaping Alpine's future driver lineup.

"Pierre Gasly does the job well," stated the charismatic Italian, "and then we can put in a young man or not a young man next to him."

Briatore, aged 74, was seen discussing with Sainz's renowned father and namesake, rally legend Carlos Sainz, in the Barcelona paddock on Sunday.

It was also noted by another onlooker that "Other people linked with Carlos and the management of his career were also seen in the Alpine motorhome."

El Confidencial reported that Sainz's father had face-to-face meetings with both Briatore and Renault CEO de Meo on Sunday morning, before the paddock got busy.

In response to Leclerc's comments that Sainz has increased his aggression due to his uncertain future, the Spaniard countered, "No, I've been driving the same since Bahrain. I don't know why you're asking that now," the 29-year-old added. "I try to give everything on track."

Ferrari boss Frederic Vasseur downplayed the incident, and former F1 driver Ralf Schumacher concurred, "These things can happen between teammates. Admittedly, the two of them got quite close, but for me it was tolerable and good for the fans, too. We want to see them race against each other, so everything is fine."

Sainz noted that Ferrari has larger challenges ahead.

"The real problem is that McLaren and Red Bull are really far away and Mercedes has also improved a lot on this type of track," he said. "We have to work really hard on this type of circuit, because there are more of them like Barcelona than Monaco."

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Flavio Briatore at the Abu Dhabi GP on November 26, 2023
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