Alpine team principal fires back at CEO’s criticism after Esteban Ocon podium

Alpine had been under pressure after only scoring 14 points in the first five races, leaving CEO Laurent Rossi frustrated with the poor showing.

Alpine came into Monaco with a lot of pressure on their shoulders, having only managed to take 14 points in five races, leaving the team’s drivers keen to deliver.

Team CEO Laurent Rossi had criticised the French team for an “amateurish” start to the season, claiming that the points gained in the opening rounds of the season was “not acceptable.”

Alpine team principal Otmar Szafnauer accepted that the constructor had been reflecting on the criticism, working to turn things around prior to the Monaco Grand Prix.

Putting his best foot forward, Esteban Ocon delivered in the principality, taking P3 in qualifying before securing the team’s first podium finish since 2021.

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Pierre Gasly didn’t shirk his responsibilities either during the race, securing P7 by the chequered flag to ensure a double points finish for the team.

“We reflected on his comments. F1 is a tough business and you’ve got to get everything right,” Szafnauer said.

“I’ve been doing this for 25 years and I know what it takes.

“We set a 100-race plan. We’re 26 in and have 74 left,” he added. “I’m gonna see Laurent here. Reasonable people with the same information will come to the same conclusion. 

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“Mercedes bought a championship-winning team (Brawn in 2009). It took them five years to win again.”

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Prior to Monaco, Alpine had only scored points in three of the first five rounds, suffering disappointing results in Australia and Azerbaijan.

Australia was particularly painful for the team after an avoidable incident saw Gasly collide with Ocon, taking both cars out of the race when they were running in the points.

Alpine will hoping for another strong showing in Barcelona, when the drivers hit the track at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya next weekend.