On the eve of the Belgian Grand Prix, Alpine has announced that Team Principal Otmar Szafnauer, Sporting Director Alan Permane and Chief Technical Officer Pat Fry will leave the team following this weekend's Spa F1 race.
Born in Semlac, a small village in Western Romania to an American father of German descent and a Romanian mother, Szafnauer graduated in electrical engineering and then in business and finance in Detroit.
He joined Ford Motor Company before becoming Operations Director at British American Racing in Formula One. He joined the Management Board of the Honda F1 Team in 2001 before founding Soft Paur which released the official Formula One Timing and Track Positioning Application on the iPhone in June 2009.
The same year saw Szafnauer join Force India and stayed with the Silverstone outfit when it became Aston Martin for the 2021 season. At the start of last year, he joined the Alpine F1 Team as Team Principal.
Alpine has now revealed that Szafnaur will leave the team, but he is set to continue his duties as normal for this weekend’s race in Belgium.
A statement from Alpine read: "The team would like to thank Otmar for his hard work over the past 18 months and for leading the team in achieving fourth place in the 2022 Constructors' Championship. The team wishes him the best for the future."
Furthermore, the Anglo-French outfit also confirmed that it will part ways with Sporting Director Alan Permane by mutual agreement. Just as Szafnauer, Permane will also continue his role this weekend in Belgium before departing ahead of the summer break.
"After 34 distinguished years at Enstone, the team extends its thanks to Alan and wishes him the best in his future endeavours," read a statement from the team.
The team also announced that Chief Technical Officer Pat Fry will leave the team to continue his career in Formula 1 elsewhere. Fry joined Alpine ahead of the 2022 F1 season and oversaw all technical activities, set performance targets, and identify future technologies for the car
Bruno Famin, VP, Alpine Motorsports, will assume the role of Interim Team Principal of BWT Alpine F1 Team from the Dutch Grand Prix onwards. Current Alpine Academy Director Julian Rouse is named Interim Sporting Director, with Matt Harman leading the technical team at Enstone.