Rossi Insists Alonso Won’t Be Alpine’s Number One Driver

Alpine’s CEO has said they want to encourage “healthy competition” between Fernando Alonso and Esteban Ocon.

Fernando Alonso Alpine Renault - article by Suliman Mulhem

Alpine CEO Laurent Rossi has insisted that the newly rebranded team won’t have a number one and number two driver this upcoming season.

Double World Champion Fernando Alonso will be returning to Formula One in a few weeks’ time with the Alpine F1 Team after a two-year hiatus.

READ: Williams Sponsorship Comments Spark Speculation Rich Energy Is Set To Partner Them

Despite the Spaniard being out of action for a while and getting very limited on-track running time prior to his return, many people believe he will emerge as the team’s lead driver.

However, Rossi has said they want to encourage “health competition” between Alonso and Esteban Ocon, who scored his first F1 podium at the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix, instead of designating one of them as their number one driver. 

“That doesn’t exist,” Rossi told when asked if the team will run a number one driver this upcoming season.

“I don’t think it exists in many teams to be honest, at least not in ours.

“The drivers have to be as fast as possible and will clearly challenge each other.

“That’s like healthy competition and that’s about it. There’s no instruction and no number one driver,” he added.

Article continues below

Meanwhile, Ocon, who joined the team after being forced out of Formula One for the 2019 season following Lawrence Stroll’s takeover of Racing Point, said he is looking forward to being Alonso’s team-mate.

“I’m very much looking forward to working with Fernando,” Ocon said.

“It’s exciting to see how a two-time Formula One World Champion works and to be teaming up with him is a privilege.

“I’m definitely looking forward as we’ll have a great collaboration. We already started to work together towards the end of the year and there’s going to be more of that in the coming days and weeks.”

Alonso suffered a fractured jaw last month after being hit by a car while cycling in Switzerland, but the Alpine F1 Team has said he will be fit to take part in pre-season testing and the season-opener in Bahrain.

READ: Porsche & VW Mulling F1 Entry In 2025