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Alpine F1 Team

'Flamboyant figure set for more hands-on Alpine F1 role'

Reports in Italian media have claimed that Renault boss Luca de Meo has asked Flavio Briatore to return to Team Enstone.

Flavio Briatore
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Reports in Italian media have claimed that Flavio Briatore could be about to make a stunning return to Formula 1 with Alpine. 

The flamboyant but at the same time controversial Italian was banned from F1 in the aftermath of the 2008 crash-gate scandal where Renault driver Nelson Piquet Jr deliberately crashed in Singapore to aid team-mate Fernando Alonso's victory quest. 

The life-time ban Briatore was handed was subsequently overturned, and he is a regular fixture in the paddock. 

He was also in charge of the team in its Benetton guise, helping Michael Schumacher to win the 1994 and 1995 Drivers' and '95 Constructors' titles.

Corriere della Sera has reported that Renault chief Luca de Meo has asked Briatore to return to Enstone in an advisory role that would not include any sizeable involvement in trackside operations. It is claimed that Briatore has accepted the offer from de Meo as Alpine looks to rebuild following a turbulent period. 

"As a team, we are in frequent contact with a number of industry experts in pursuit of improving overall performance," a team spokesperson told RacingNews365 after a request for comment on the claims. 

"We consider all relevant inputs and, when appropriate, seek advice from people with experience and previous success. We cannot comment on any individual matters."

Article continues below.

Big change at Alpine

Within the last year, CEO Laurent Rossi, team principal Otmar Szafnauer, sporting director Alan Permane, technical director Matt Harman and head of aerodynamics Dirk de Beer have all left the team, with the 2024 A524 machine proving over-weight. 

The tea has made good steps forward in reducing the weight of the car, and has scored points in two of the last three races - a 10th place apiece for Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly in Miami and Monaco, respectively.

The technical ranks have since been bolstered by the arrival of David Sanchez after the highly-regarded engineer left McLaren.

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