Alpine has “absolutely no concerns” about the problem with Alonso in 2022

Alonso’s move was announced on Monday after the Hungarian GP while Alpine is still believed to be in negotiations to extend his contract.

Szafnauer first learned about the move from Aston Martin’s press release, rather than from the driver himself.

However, despite the obvious tensions such a scenario could create, Szafnauer insists the two parties will continue to work well together.

“I have absolutely no worries about the rest of the season,” he said. “Our goals are quite clear. We want to finish at least fourth in the constructors’ championship. I think third is a step too far.

“Fernando also realized that. He’s a professional. He’s a competitor. When he puts on that helmet, you know as well as I do, he wants to do everything he can, if not win.

“And there’s nothing else on his mind when he’s in a racing car other than finishing as well as he can in that race, and in the championship.

“And he still has that drive. It’s what he’s here to do. And I’m the same.”

Esteban Ocon, Alpine F1 Team A522, Fernando Alonso, Alpine F1 Team A522

Photo by: Alpine

Szafnauer insisted that A522 could become more competitive as the season progresses.

“I want to do everything we can. And especially this year, our upgrades are still coming very quickly. We will have another upgrade at the Spa, and will continue to upgrade the car until the end of the year. And Fernando also understands that.

“And he will work hard like Esteban [Ocon] to maximize team performance. I have no doubt about that.”

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When asked how Alonso is doing at Aston Martin – working for Lawrence Stroll and as a team mate to the team owner’s son Lance – Szafnauer said it was too early to predict.

“He’s a great, great driver, among the best I’ve ever worked with,” he said. “He still is competing at a very high level. He’s still fast, and in tricky conditions, which really show the driver’s skill, he is even better. And we saw that this year. If that continues for another three years, great for Aston and Fernando.

“I don’t know when that will disappear, but from a working relationship, I don’t know, I can’t predict because there are so many factors that you have to take into consideration to be able to predict how that’s going to play out. But let’s see what happens.”

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