Aimed at securing long-term stability and ensuring continuity, Scuderia AlphaTauri today announces that a new senior management structure is to be put in place at the Team.
Former FIA executive Peter Bayer (shown above) will join the Team as Chief Executive Officer later this year, while Franz Tost will step down from the role of Team Principal at the end of the 2023 season. Laurent Mekies, currently Sporting Director at Ferrari, will join Scuderia AlphaTauri as its new Team Principal at a date to be confirmed.
A key figure in the development of both Scuderia AlphaTauri and its predecessor Scuderia Toro Rosso, Franz Tost joined the Faenza squad as Team Principal upon its creation in 2005 and led Toro Rosso to its first victory, on home soil, at the 2008 Italian Grand Prix. Following its rebranding as Scuderia AlphaTauri, Franz again led the Team to victory in 2020, winning at Monza for a second time.
With the Team also charged with the development of young drivers for future F1 success, during his time with the team Franz also helped progress a generation of grand prix winners and champions, including four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel, two-time world champion Max Verstappen and race winners Daniel Ricciardo, Pierre Gasly and Carlos Sainz.
Recognizing his longstanding contribution to the Team and its drivers, Franz will continue to work with Scuderia AlphaTauri in a consultancy role in 2024.
Peter Bayer joins Scuderia AlphaTauri as CEO having most recently acted as F1 Executive Director and Secretary General for Sport at the FIA. Peter will oversee the strategic direction of the team at its facilities in Faenza and in the UK.
Laurent Mekies’ appointment as Team Principal at Scuderia AlphaTauri brings Ferrari’s current Sporting Director back to the Team with which he achieved many of his early successes, first as a race engineer and ultimately as Chief Engineer and Head of Vehicle Performance. After his first stint in Faenza, Laurent spent four years at the FIA as Safety Director and Deputy Race Director, before joining Ferrari in 2018.
With Laurent being responsible for the day-to-day operation of the team, including Technical, Manufacturing, Support Function and Race Team operations and in conjunction with Peter’s strategically focussed role, they will create a new and dynamic leadership team with equal responsibility.
Outgoing Scuderia AlphaTauri Team Principal Franz Tost said: “First of all, I would like to thank Dietrich Mateschitz, who gave me the incredible opportunity to be Team Principal of Scuderia Toro Rosso and Scuderia AlphaTauri for the past 18 years. It has been a true privilege to lead the Team for such a long period and a great pleasure to work with so many motivated and skilled people, who share my passion for Formula 1. With 67 years old it is time to hand over and with Peter as new CEO and Laurent as Team Principal, we found two very professional people, who will bring the Team to the next level. I want to thank everyone for the good cooperation.
Incoming Scuderia AlphaTauri Team Principal Laurent Mekies said: “Firstly, I’d like to pay tribute to Franz for the great job he has done over almost two decades in charge at Faenza. I wish him well for the future and I know that both Peter and I will rely on his input and advice in times to come. Looking forward, I am honored to take on the role of Team Principal and to return to the Team where I spent a large portion of my early career. Scuderia AlphaTauri has all of the ingredients necessary for greater success in the future and in tandem with Peter I’m looking forward to making that happen.”
Incoming Scuderia AlphaTauri CEO Peter Bayer said: “I would also like to thank Franz for his dedication to Scuderia AlphaTauri and its predecessor, Scuderia Toro Rosso. His commitment to developing young talent has resulted in a Formula 1 grid where 25% of the drivers have benefited from his guidance. It is a great privilege for me, too, to take on the role of CEO at the Team and working alongside Laurent. Scuderia AlphaTauri has a fantastic team of people and great infrastructure in Faenza and in the UK. I am very much looking forward to building on those key elements to increase performance, on an off track, and to bring the Team even more success in the coming years.”
Oliver Mintzlaff, Chief Executive of Corporate Projects and Investments, Red Bull GmbH said: “Firstly, I would like to thank Franz Tost for his hard work at Scuderia AlphaTauri and Scuderia Toro Rosso over the past 18 years. Throughout his time at the team Franz has been driven by a singular vision – the pursuit of ever more performance from machine and from driver. His leadership resulted in outstanding victories and in the development of some of the finest talents ever seen in Formula 1. Replacing him as he steps back has not been easy and has resulted in a redefinition of the management structure at the Team. I am therefore very pleased to welcome Peter Bayer as CEO and Laurent Mekies as Team Principal. Both have huge experience in top positions in Formula 1 and together I am sure they will take Scuderia AlphaTauri to even greater heights in the future.”