Alpine transfer window accelerates, driver and engine announced quickly?

Alpine transfer window accelerates, driver and engine announced quickly?
Alpine transfer window accelerates, driver and engine announced quickly?

But what magic trick has Mercedes pulled off with its 2026-regulation engine? The German team has clearly managed to take the competition by surprise by producing a power unit that is much better than its rivals at its Brackley factory.

The rumor has been growing for several months in the paddock to the point that the other teams themselves admit it: Mercedes seems to have taken a big lead in view of the new regulations. Alpine is closely following the development of the situation, especially since the French team is seriously considering ceasing to produce its own engines and becoming a customer team.

So discussions have been started by the new executive advisor Flavio Briatore with Ferrari and Mercedes, it is visibly the firm with the star that holds the rope to equip the single-seaters bearing the arrowed A. The Viry-Châtillon factory would then be entirely dedicated to the engines of the Alpine Hypercars, entered in Endurance, while the heart of the F1 team would be centralized in Enstone (Great Britain) announces the Gazzetta dello Sport.

Carlos Sainz is approaching

This new organization would allow the French to offload the burden of producing their own power unit and benefit from that of Mercedes, announced as the best on the grid. The move under the German flag would be an argument that tipped the balance in favor of Alpine in the recruitment of Carlos Sainz.

The Spaniard, courted by Sauber and Williams, has stopped talks with these teams to focus on the offer made by Flavio Briatore. La Gazzetta dello Sport assures that the Ferrari driver will indeed join the French team to replace Esteban Ocon from next season.

If Williams also offered him a chance to drive a single-seater equipped with a Mercedes engine, Carlos Sainz would have been influenced by the presence of Briatore, who clearly knew how to find the words to convince him. After fifteen years of absence from the paddock, the Italian businessman made a remarkable return by signing a very nice coup a few days after having made official the extension of Pierre Gasly.

Williams turns to Valtteri Bottas

The No. 55 should therefore officially sign with Alpine and decline the offer from Williams, which had made him its priority to become Alex Albon’s teammate. The Grove team would now have set its sights on Valtteri Bottas, probably not kept by Sauber and who knows the structure well for having driven there between 2013 and 2016.

The Sauber-Audi project finds itself in a delicate situation, due to a lack of available experienced drivers. The Germans still have the option of keeping Guanyu Zhou or repatriating a Daniel Ricciardo or a Kevin Magnussen, probably dropped by their respective teams. Unless, against all expectations, Théo Pourchaire, still the team’s reserve driver, manages to pull his weight…

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In short

Alpine are reportedly close to signing Carlos Sainz to replace Esteban Ocon at the end of the season, with the Spaniard’s arrival reportedly linked to a switch to a Mercedes engine in 2026.

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