Alpine boss explains how Ryan Reynolds’ investment enables ‘fight with the bigger teams’

Sam Cooper
The Alpine logo and Ryan Reynolds.

The Alpine logo and Ryan Reynolds.

Alpine boss Otmar Szafnauer says the money invested by Ryan Reynolds and others will be used to improve the team’s infrastructure.

The French/English outfit made headlines during the week when they announced a £171m investment from a trio of American investment funds.

It is through Maximum Effort Investments that Reynolds and Wrexham co-owner Rob McElhenney are involved who joined forces with Otro Capital and RedBird Capital Partners to purchase a 24% stake in the team.

That cash injection will not be spent directly on the team’s performance, but instead on infrastructure which Szafnauer believes will give Alpine the ability to “fight with the bigger teams.”

“The reason for the investment is we do need some infrastructure and hopefully the infrastructure equalisation will happen soon with the FIA,” he told Sky Sports F1 following the free practice session in Austria. “This will just give us funding to give us the tools that we need to fight with the bigger teams.

“We haven’t talked to him [Reynolds] yet, but definitely from Redbird Capital and Otro Capital, they agree that the money should be used to make the team better.

“They also have some plans of bringing even further revenue to the team and that too will go into improving and enhancing [the team].

“We are a little bit behind on some required sets of tools and the infrastructure that we need.

“Driver and loop simulator, for example, ours is 15 years old, there’s a new one coming. Brake dynos, we don’t have and others do. Suspension rigs that we don’t have and others do. Unfortunately, all that is not cheap.”

The new part-owners however will not be providing any technical suggestions, with Szafnauer saying that is not where their expertise lie.

“What they’re really good at is the commercial side of the business,” the Alpine boss said. “On the technical side, it’d be great if they could input but I think their expertise lies elsewhere so the technical side will continue to do what we’re doing.” recommends

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The investment is another step forward on Alpine’s 100-race plan to return to the summit of F1 in a project they call Mountain Climber.

“Like I always say, to win in Formula 1 it takes good tools and good people and Mountain Climber does both,” he said.

“Some of the tools that you have to put in place do take a long time and then nowadays it seems like the people you’re trying to attract in areas that we’re lacking, it seems like everyone locks them in for three to four years so they too take a long time.

“That’s why it’s a 100-race plan but we’re a year and a half into it.”

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