Aston Martin team principal Mike Krack has revealed that he plans to talk to Alpine about when Fernando Alonso can begin working with the Silverstone-based team, with the Spaniard set to join the British side in 2023.
It was announced prior to the Hungarian Grand Prix that current Aston Martin driver Sebastian Vettel would be retiring at the end of the season; however, it only took a couple of days for the team to announce that double World Champion Alonso would be replacing him for next season.
Alonso shocked many by announcing he’d be leaving the Enstone-based team for Aston Martin, given the fact Alpine are currently fourth in the Constructors’ Standings, whereas the British racing green side are ninth.
The 41-year-old had been expected to sign a one-year contract extension with Alpine, who are still searching for Alonso’s replacement.
Alonso was reportedly unhappy with the deal offered to him, which involved the French side eventually pushing the Spanish driver off into another motorsport series, potentially WEC.
Aston Martin, on the other hand, offered Alonso a much more suitable approach by the 2005 and 2006 World Champion’s standards, which will see the Spaniard at Aston Martin for two-years with the option for a third.
The issue currently facing Aston Martin, though, is that Alonso’s contract with Alpine doesn’t actually end until 31st December, with Alonso officially becoming an Aston Martin driver on the 1st January.
This means the team can’t talk about next year’s car with Alonso until next season, which by that point would be fairly pointless given the fact the majority of the build will have been completed.
With this in mind, Krack wants to talk to the French team to see what they’ll allow, in order to give the Spaniard some input on the 2023 car.
“We need to clarify what we can do and what we cannot do,” said Krack, quoted by GPFans.
“He’s an Alpine driver and we are Aston Martin and the contract starts at the beginning of next year.
“So anything between, that is not possible.”
Whilst getting up to speed next year won’t be an issue for Alonso, given his wealth of experience, it would be incredibly frustrating for the team to have to build a car with zero influence from their star driver.
2023 is already set to be a big year for Aston Martin, after what has been a dreadful 2022 campaign.
The team are set to take a huge step-forward next year with the addition of former Red Bull head of aerodynamics Dan Fallows.
Fallows joined at the start of this year so had no impact on the woeful AMR22, which was once again damaged by Lance Stroll during FP1 at Singapore after hitting the wall at Turn Five.
If Fallows and Alonso can both help design the team’s 2023 challenger, then Aston Martin could be a team to watch out for next season.