AlphaTauri denies rumours of sale. The boss of the AlphaTauri team was able to speak with the shareholders who assured him that the team will not be sold, contrary to what has been rumoured in recent days. What is rather more of a smoking gun is that Tost felt the need to approach Red Bull management to seek clarification on the matter. Rumours with no foundation usually are not commented on at all, let alone have an official denial in the press.
AlphaTauri team boss Franz Tost has categorically denied the rumour that his team is for sale due to poor results in 2022.
Last week, German newspaper Auto Motor Und Sport reported that Red Bull was looking to cut costs in the AlphaTauri project, either by moving the small team from its Italian base to England or, in the worst case, by selling the team.
However, this rumour was quickly denied by the AlphaTauri team on the eve of the 2023 season, which starts on the first weekend of March with the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Tost confirms he approached Red Bull for answers
In a short press release, team principal Franz Tost said he had received confirmation from the team’s main shareholders that they had no intention of selling the AlphaTauri team and that Red Bull (AlphaTauri’s parent company) would continue to support the team.
“I had very good meetings with Oliver Mintzlaff, who confirmed that the shareholders would not sell Scuderia AlphaTauri, and that Red Bull would continue to support the team in the future,” confirmed Tost.
“All these rumours have no foundation, and the team must remain focused for the start of the season to do better than last year.”
In 2022 AlphaTauri finished second to last in the constructors’ world championship with only 35 points scored.
‘Smoking gun’ sale rumour
Perhaps what is most telling is that normally an unfounded rumour published by a single newspaper or media outlet will simply be ignored and not commented on. The fact that the boss of AlphaTauri has felt the need to publish an official denial for the team is telling. Red Bull themselves, the owners of the team, remain silent…
The performance of AlphaTauri in 2022 has been poor, and one would not be surprised at all to hear that Franz Tost has been given the proverbial ‘kick up the arse’ by parent company Red Bull, who’s new CEO Oliver Mintzlaff is not a motorsport fan (unlike the recently deceased founder Dietrich Mateschitz).
The new Red Bull world order
Alongside Mateschitz’s son Mark and the Thai owner of Red Bull, Mintzlaff has become one of three powerful men at the globally renowned brand. He will be responsible for the company’s sports activities with investments in football, ice hockey, Formula 1 and sailing, among others, as well as the TV channel Servus-TV.
Despite Mintzlaff being named as successor by motorsport fan and former owner Mateschitz it remained to be seen what kind of provisions Dietricht Mateschitz has made for the Red Bull F1 racing outfits future. Perhaps it is not the main team that ought to be concerned, rather the junior satellite team AlphaTauri.
If the recent proceedings are anything to gauge, however, Tost has been given an ultimately by Red Bull to perform or lose his team.