(GMM) The problem at Alpine isn’t people – it’s money. That’s the view of highly respected Formula 1 engineer Marcin Budkowski, who left the Renault-owned team at the beginning of last year.
He was asked about F1 legend Alain Prost’s recent words about the sad current moment taking place at Alpine, with upper management having suddenly axed its team boss Otmar Szafnauer and the long-serving Alan Permane.
“Generally, Alain and I see things in a similar way,” he told Viaplay Sport Polska. “I spoke with him shortly after these changes were announced.
“Honestly, I’m sad as well, because this team is still close to my heart. I spent many years there,” the 46-year-old Pole added.
“I know a lot of people there and have contact with them. And they deserve better – better results and better management.”
But the problem, Budkowski thinks, is not the people at Enstone or Viry.
“The problem with Renault in Formula 1 has always been that the ambitions are very high, but the financial resources are insufficient,” he said.
“Every year the ambitions got higher and higher, but the resources that are put into it do not. But the Renault board never wanted to hear that.
“Otmar has spent many years in Formula 1 with different teams – he knows what it takes to win and how difficult it is to achieve it. He also knows how much money is spent by the teams who win, and how long it takes to be successful.
“That approach was probably not appreciated by Renault,” Budkowski said.
As for the latest management turmoil, he thinks Renault is reacting to the major progress being made by comparable outfits.
“Aston Martin’s results this year, and also McLaren’s, have shown that progress can be accelerated,” he said, “although you can see Aston Martin slipping back a bit now, and McLaren has its good and bad moments.
“It is not a linear process, but those results from Aston Martin and McLaren have not helped the situation at Alpine,” added Budkowski.
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