Chair back at Alpine: The Formula 1 team has confirmed that the previous executive director Marcin Budkowski left the organization on Thursday. The 44-year-old had already been linked with a possible role at Aston Martin towards the end of last season.
The recent departure of team boss there Otmar Szafnauer has opened up a potential opportunity for the Silverstone team. Szafnauer’s name has again been mentioned in connection with Alpine for some time, which would amount to a direct exchange between two key figures in the sport.
Budkowski surprisingly switched from the FIA to the then Renault team in 2018. In a sense, he worked as number two alongside longtime team boss Cyril Abiteboul until the end of the 2020 season. This went in early 2021.
Alpine CEO Rossi takes over temporarily
After moving to the Alpine brand, Budkowski worked alongside new race director Davide Brivio in 2020, with both being overseen by Alpine CEO Laurent Rossi, who was the liaison with Renault top management.
With Budkowski’s departure, Rossi will temporarily take charge of the team “so everyone can focus on preparing for next season,” according to the team, who are set to announce a permanent new structure shortly.
“I would like to thank Marcin Budkowski for his dedication and contribution to the team’s results over the past four years,” said Rossi. “The team is fully focused on getting the car fit for the first race in Bahrain and taking another step in terms of performance.”
Budkowski says thank you for four years together
Budkowski himself says in farewell: “I really enjoyed being part of the management team in the Renault and then Alpine Formula 1 team and working with such a talented and dedicated group of people. I will follow the progress of the team in look forward to the coming seasons.”
Budkowski previously worked in aerodynamics at Prost, Ferrari and McLaren, where he became head of the aerodynamics department in 2012. He joined the FIA in October 2014 and, like Laurent Mekies (now Ferrari Racing Director), was groomed to later take over some of Charlie Whiting’s responsibilities.
He was appointed FIA technical and sporting coordinator in April 2015, and head of Formula 1’s technical department in January 2017. However, frustrated by the apparent lack of advancement opportunities, he decided the following year to return to a team role at Renault.