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Formula 1

Alpine brings Briatore back into F1 team in new role

by Edd Straw, Matt Beer
2 min read

Alpine has controversially hired former Benetton and Renault Formula 1 team boss Flavio Briatore as an executive advisor.

Briatore ran the team for two spells, first in its Benetton guise in the 1990s - leading it to two championships with Michael Schumacher - and then again when it was under Renault ownership and winning titles with Fernando Alonso.

But he exited amid scandal following the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix race-fixing incident, when Alonso won for his Renault team after team-mate Nelson Piquet was ordered to deliberately crash and trigger a safety car at an advantageous time for Alonso's strategy.

Briatore was initially banned from involvement in FIA motorsport for life, but that sanction was reduced after a legal challenge.

He continued to manage racing drivers and had widespread business involvement around motorsport.

Briatore has recently been working with F1 itself on commercial matters so has been around the paddock again this season.

But this is the first high visibility role in F1 since the 2008 scandal and is all the more sensational given it is with the team that Renault has since become.

A return with Alpine had been heavily rumoured in recent weeks and was officially announced by the team ahead of the Spanish Grand Prix weekend on Friday morning.

Alpine said Briatore had been "appointed by Renault Group CEO Luca de Meo as his executive advisor for the Formula 1 division".

Briatore arrives amid a turbulent period for Alpine, which had substantial management personnel change in mid-2023 and then started the 2024 season with the slowest car in the field.

This week there have been reports it is considering abandoning its works team status to seek a future customer engine deal.

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