Mark Webber hints ousted Alpine veteran will be wanted man in F1 paddock

Sam Cooper
Alan Permane and Otmar Szafnauer

On the chopping block: Alan Permane and Otmar Szafnauer paid the price for Alpine's failures.

Mark Webber has suggested ousted Alpine employee Alan Permane would not struggle to find a new team in the F1 paddock.

After a 34-year career with the Enstone team, Permane along with Otmar Szafnauer was let go by Alpine, seemingly taking the blame for their underperforming performances.

But someone with the experience and reputation of Permane is likely to not be out of the paddock too long.

Mark Webber believes Alan Permane will be snapped up

Speaking on Channel 4, Australian former racer Webber predicted Permane would not struggle in any team up in the paddock.

“Obviously they [Alpine] feel they needed to get pretty heavy duty with some changes there,” Webber said. “And they’ve certainly done that.

“I mean Alan Permane, he’s been there for over 30 years. He was there for all of Michael Schumacher’s success, with Fernando Alonso as well. So he’s an experienced campaigner.

“So I sort of feel for Alan in a way because obviously I think he won’t struggle anywhere in this pit lane because he’s a top guy, but ultimately, they felt they need to make the changes.

“Hopefully for them, now they can start to get that fresh investment as well so hopefully they can start to get some traction pretty soon.”

Pat Fry is Alpine’s loss and Williams’ gain

Permane and Szafnauer were not the only names out of the Alpine door that day with Williams confirming they had poached chief technical officer Pat Fry away from the French team.

W Series champion and Indy NXT driver Jamie Chadwick suggested Fry’s departure would be Alpine’s loss and WIlliams’ gain.

“I think Alpine’s loss is Williams’s gain and just adds to James Vowles’ new restructure with the team,” she said. “Hopefully it’s a gain for them. They’re making good progress at the moment with James at the helm so I think it’s a good thing for them.” recommends

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Vowles hopes Fry will be seen as a change of culture.

“When people saw that I left the comfort of Mercedes to go to Williams and now people have seen Pat, at a time where Alpine was in a strong place, people will now understand that Williams wants a culture of change,” he told media including

“So, it’s not specifically that. It’s more that once you see two very senior people that have been in the sport for 20 plus years and winning races and we want to come here, others will now see why it’s worth that journey.”

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