AlphaTauri told Pierre Gasly AT04 will be ‘best one they have ever had’

Jamie Woodhouse
Nyck de Vries driving the AlphaTauri AT03. Abu Dhabi, November 2022.

Nyck de Vries driving the AlphaTauri AT03 in a post-season test. Abu Dhabi, November 2022.

Having left AlphaTauri for Alpine, Pierre Gasly says his former team plan to unveil an AT04 which will blow away its predecessors.

Gasly had very much got his hopes up in relation to the 2022 season, believing that the combination of the budget cap and new regulations would set AlphaTauri up to lead the midfield at the very least.

As it turned out, they would go on to become one of those propping it up, finishing P9 in the final Constructors’ standings ahead of only Williams.

But as that was the first season of these regulations, teams now go into the winter break with a great deal of learning to put into their 2023 challengers, this leaving Gasly uncertain on where AlphaTauri or Alpine will find themselves.

But what he does know is that after a disappointing campaign, AlphaTauri are set to ring in the changes with the AT04.

“In this sport it’s so difficult to know what’s going to happen from one year to another,” said Gasly, as per Motorsport.com.

“We [AlphaTauri] were top of the midfield last season, this year we were back of the midfield and next season, who knows what’s going to happen?

“Maybe AlphaTauri, and I know they’re changing completely the concept of the car, will be back in the fight. It’s difficult to say.

“I think what’s important is just to work and prepare ourselves the best way possible for next year. And yeah, crossing my fingers that the Alpine package is going to be even stronger than it was this year.

“Hopefully it changes for good, my position, but at the same time, you never know. We talked about it with the [AlphaTauri] guys as well.

“They tell me that their next year’s car is the best one they have ever had, and they’re going to be fighting at the front!

“And it’s normal, and then when you speak around the paddock everybody is making huge steps forward and God knows what’s going to happen.”

As for Gasly’s ambitions, he says the top three of Red Bull, Ferrari and Mercedes are the target for Alpine, and hopes his new team can mix it up with that trio from next season. He is also wary of the potential flipside.

“I hope we’re fighting at the front, maybe we’re fighting for podiums, for race wins, or for top five. Or it could be a more challenging season,” he said.

“Usually teams have different designers and they’re switching designers from one season to another. So there is still some carryover from year to year, but yeah, there could be some surprises. So we’ll find this out at the start of next year.

“Alpine has had a fantastic season, finishing fourth in the Championship, beating McLaren. So they clearly have a good package. And next target is the big three.

“So we’ll try to push as hard as possible, but I’m confident there are going to be amazing results to achieve with the team.”

The best AlphaTauri yet would be good news for Formula 1

There was particular excitement surrounding these new rules thanks to the key aims, those being to tighten up the grid and make following another car easier, thus boosting the number of overtaking opportunities.

It is safe to say that 2022 did not deliver a tighter grid, if anything it spread out with Red Bull winning 17 of the 22 races, only Ferrari and on occasion Mercedes able to challenge them.

AlphaTauri of course enjoy close ties with Red Bull Technologies as the sister team to Red Bull under that organisation’s banner, so it was quite the surprise to see the team languishing near the bottom of the 2022 standings.

But if they have now found the formula for success with the AT04, and if the Alpine challenger can also prove to be a positive step, then this is fantastic news for Formula 1 heading into the 2023 campaign, as the series looks to deliver on that ambition of a more competitive grid.

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