Welcome at RacingNews365

Become part of the largest racing community in the United Kingdom. Create your free account now!

  • Share your thoughts and opinions about F1
  • Win fantastic prizes
  • Get access to our premium content
  • Take advantage of more exclusive benefits
Sign in

Alpine warn Piastri contract saga could spark big changes in F1

Following a much-publicised dispute over Oscar Piastri's services for 2023, Alpine CEO Laurent Rossi believes that the sport – along with the team – will take big lessons from the saga.

Alpine CEO Laurent Rossi has warned that the Oscar Piastri contract saga could lead to changes across the sport in regards to academy drivers. Piastri had been a part of the Alpine Academy before the dispute over his services for 2023, which saw the French team and McLaren take their cases to the Contract Recognition Board. The ruling went in McLaren's favour, leading to Piastri joining the squad for the new F1 season . In light of what happened, Rossi admits that the outfit have reconsidered how they structure contracts for drivers in their academy, an issue that he believes will also be in the minds of many other teams. "We learned a lot, to be honest, and we'd be foolish not to learn from that," Rossi told the Beyond The Grid podcast about the saga. "We learned a couple of things. I would say there's no such thing as loyalty, especially when individual interests are at stake. It's difficult to combine both for people that are sometimes a bit too young to weigh the pros and cons of both. "And then we also learned that we were insufficiently prepared on a couple of areas, especially in the way we structure our contracts with the academy drivers and the way we transfer that into the Formula 1 world, which I guess everyone was, because you heard Toto [Wolff] and and Christian [Horner], I believe, saying it was going to set the precedent. "So we learned that we left too many doors open in our contract because no one thought those people would just go and leave using that open door."

Alpine explain changes made after Piastri saga

Rossi admits that Alpine have already made changes following the situation with Piastri in order to be more "protective" of contracts. "It would only be normal to come back to the team that help you. Well, we're going to change that," he explained. "We've changed that already. We've a bit more corporate and protective of our contracts now. It's a bit more stringent if you want to sign something with Alpine. It's less of a let's shake hands and we're happy to have you in the family. "You're still in the family, but you're in the family with the contract. It's like your kids have a contract with the parents, it's a bit sad, but it's the way it is. "You would never expect your kids to leave to the bedroom one night and never show up again. And you would certainly not put locks on contracts. We [were] forced to do that a bit. "I guess it goes with the evolution of also the industry. We've more stakes, more money involved, which potentially can make your head spin a bit every now and then. So we have to come to terms with it. "We're getting more and more professional, which means we need to be more, more and more professional in every single aspect of the sport, including the way we [are] contracting."

Are drivers disloyal by nature?

When asked if drivers are so competitive that they will always be disloyal should a better opportunity arise elsewhere, Rossi suggested that this was not necessarily the case. "I wouldn't call drivers disloyal, to be honest," he commented. "They also have their own career to manage. And God knows it's a difficult one because there's really few of them and it's ferocious, as you said, and they don't have an easy one, right? If they have a bad year, they just get the boot and it's tough. "So I think they also need to manage their own interest now. And there is probably ways to do it."

LATEST Russell predicts imminent Red Bull 'move'