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AlphaTauri sign Ferrari chief, reject huge buy-out offer

Laurent Mekies is poised to leave his current role with Ferrari to take up a new position at AlphaTauri.

Ferrari Racing Director Laurent Mekies is poised to join the AlphaTauri Formula 1 team, RacingNews365.com has learned from Italian sources. According to the sources, Mekies will be working alongside Team Principal Franz Tost, and it is expected to be part of a wider personnel rearrangement at the Faenza team. Mekies previously worked for the team in their Minardi and Toro Rosso days, joining in 2002 and working there for over 10 years and becoming Chief Engineer before taking on roles at the FIA and then Ferrari. As part of their restructuring, AlphaTauri recently announced the signing of Lars Stegelmann, who joined as the team's Head of Commercial in March. The moves suggest that the AlphaTauri team is not for sale, and points to a commitment by Red Bull to improve the performances of their second team. RacingNews365.com also understands that various offers have been made to the Red Bull group to purchase AlphaTauri, including one for at least $800m which was rejected, but the restructuring points to AlphaTauri not being for sale for the foreseeable future. Speculation has been building about the future of the team, with Red Bull's Motorsport Advisor Helmut Marko previously telling RacingNews365.com that the team was not for sale, but there were "several considerations" being discussed . Rumours had begun to circulate that Team Principal Tost was considering retirement and when asked by RacingNews365.com earlier in the season for a response to the rumours, the 67-year-old declined to address them.

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