Alpine in late bid for Sainz as F1 talks ramp up

Alpine has made a late bid to try to secure Carlos Sainz’s services for next year as it pushes to move up the Formula 1 grid, Autosport can reveal.

Just as it appeared that Sainz had been left with a straight choice between Williams and Sauber/Audi in terms of securing a seat for next year, sources have revealed that serious talks have now ramped up with Alpine.

It has even been suggested that an attractive contract offer has been made for Sainz to commit his future to the squad.

Whereas just a few months ago the Alpine option may have had little going for it, with a difficult start to the campaign leaving its A524 at the back of the grid, things are different now.

At last weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix, both of its drivers Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon got through to Q3 and they finished ninth and 10th respectively to secure a double points finish.

It is the second consecutive time that Alpine has brought both drivers home in the points, with it also happening in Canada, while it is now the third straight race that it has finished in the top ten.

This form is in contrast to what Sainz’s other options have endured in recent races.

Sauber, which becomes the Audi team in 2026, has yet to score a point this season with the team’s best result being 11th from the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix.

And while Williams has two points to its name, thanks to Alex Albon’s ninth place at the Monaco Grand Prix, the team endured a double retirement in Canada and had a lacklustre showing in Spain as it came home in 18th and 20th.

alpine in late bid for sainz as f1 talks ramp up

Flavio Briatore and Carlos Sainz Sr

Flavio Briatore and Carlos Sainz Sr

Photo by: Sam Bloxham / Motorsport Images

Alpine’s late bid comes just days after former F1 team boss Flavio Briatore was appointed to the squad as a special advisor to Renault CEO Luca de Meo.

One of the responsibilities for the flamboyant Italian is sorting out drivers, and he was seen with de Meo in intense discussions up and down the paddock in Barcelona during a visit to the Spanish GP.

Briatore has always been known to be aggressive in making moves for the top drivers, having famously lured Michael Schumacher away from the grasps of Jordan back in 1991 to sign him for the Benetton team that would help make him a world champion.

So, whereas previously Alpine had said it was happy to sit back and see what its options were for its 2025 driver line-up, it appears that Briatore wants to get on the front foot and find the best possible talent available.

At the moment, with Ocon leaving at the end of this year and likely to join Haas, Alpine has no drivers locked down as Gasly is also out of contract.

Sainz is eager to get his F1 future sorted so it does not distract from the rest of the season, but equally, he does not want to be rushed into a decision before feeling he has evaluated the pros and cons of everything properly.

His father, Carlos Sainz Sr. was seen visiting various motorhomes – including Sauber and Williams – on race morning in Spain, as discussions continue about his son’s future.

Speaking after finishing sixth in the Spanish GP, Sainz himself said that he was still not sure how long it would take to decide what he wanted to do.

Asked by Autosport if his future would be sorted by the Austrian Grand Prix, Sainz said: “It could be. Not for sure, but it could be.”

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