Franz Tost: ‘We can’t just poach from Red Bull as Aston Martin did’

AlphaTauri have claimed just one point from the opening three races this season, amid a disappointing start to the year.

AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost has revealed that the Faenza-based team have “intensified” their relationship with sister side Red Bull, after enduring a woeful start to the 2023 F1 season.

AlphaTauri have arguably got the worst car on the grid as it stands, with the Italians currently sat ninth in the Constructors’ Championship on just one-point.

The AT04 struggles for straight-line speed and is lacking in downforce, making for a challenging package for both Yuki Tsunoda and rookie Nyck de Vries.

In Tsunoda’s defence, the Japanese driver has made an excellent start to 2023, after claiming consecutive P11s, before finishing 10th in Australia.

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De Vries on the other hand, has struggled, with AlphaTauri’s package certainly not making his life any easier.

Having the slowest car on the grid certainly is a problem for AlphaTauri and for Red Bull to some extent, given that some of their reputation also depends on the performance of the sister side.

AlphaTauri being at the back also makes it difficult for Red Bull to truly judge their youth, and whether they can make the step into the frontrunning team.

Action has been taken to hopefully improve their performances immediately, following a restructuring of their aero department.

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As well as this, Red Bull are set to work closer with AlphaTauri, as revealed by Tost.

“The aero department was reorganised. We have separated with some employees. I am now expecting an increase in performance from the new people,” Tost told Sport1.

“I don’t want to name any names yet… [but] the responsibility is now divided between three people. 

“We can’t just poach capable people from Red Bull as Aston Martin did. The newcomers they signed were able to develop the car from an early stage…

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“But the co-operation with Red Bull is now being intensified. However, the regulations are very specific – you can’t just copy parts.”

The new aerodynamic regulations certainly haven’t been kind to AlphaTauri, who were capable of the occasional podium before 2022.

Since the new regs were introduced, though, AlphaTauri have been a shadow of their former selves, with the usual midfield side having become somewhat of a backmarker.