Alpine bringing aero upgrades to Baku as they look to challenge Mercedes and McLaren

Alpine have installed modifications on their A522 for this weekend's Azerbaijan Grand Prix to enhance their aerodynamic performance.

The Alpine F1 Team will be hoping to challenge the front of the midfield at this weekend’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix, after announcing that they’ve brought aerodynamic upgrades to suit the Baku City Circuit.

It’s been a mixed start to the season for the French team, who have shown strong pace on a number of occasions.

Despite this, they currently sit on only 40 points this season, behind both the McLaren F1 Team and Alfa Romeo.

Alpine managed to score points at the recent Monaco Grand Prix via Fernando Alonso, while Esteban Ocon finished in P12.

The team will be hoping for stronger results at this weekend’s race in Baku, and next weekend’s returning Canadian Grand Prix.

This particular double-header represents a logistical nightmare for the team, who’ll be hoping that Fernando Alonso and Esteban Ocon have a clean GP.

Alpine team principal Otmar Szafnauer previewed this weekend’s event, in the team’s official release.

“It’s been a busy past couple of weeks for the team with the challenges of both Barcelona and Monaco back-to-back,” said Szafnauer.

“Now, we look ahead to another double header, this time between two continents and two unique and challenging circuits.

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“Since its introduction to the calendar a number of years ago, Baku has always provided, above all, unpredictability, as that is the pure nature of the circuit.

“It’s a track that brings thrilling racing with overtaking opportunities aplenty, areas of risk and reward for the drivers and there’s always potential for big opportunities there, which, we must aim to be in a position to take.”

Baku has always produced unpredictability, with last season’s podium of Sergio Pérez, Sebastian Vettel and Pierre Gasly being an unimaginable one.

The race usually provides all teams with rare opportunities to score points due to the regular occurrence of safety cars and usually at least one red flag.

Alpine will be hoping that their “circuit-specific modifications” will put them in a strong position this weekend.

“We have a couple of circuit-specific modified aerodynamic upgrades for this weekend before activating the next batch of upgrades as part of our 2022 development plan,” the Alpine boss explained.

Due to the circuit consisting of both high speed and low speed corners, Szafnauer expects the set-up to be “a tough balance to find”.