F1 News

Tost: 'If Mekies doesn't make it in time, Bayer is still there'

Tost: 'If Mekies doesn't make it in time, Bayer is still there'

2 May - 18:05 Last update: 23:21


Yuki Tsunoda reacted with surprise to the news that team boss Franz tost is leaving AlphaTauri and Formula 1. The Japanese driver was not yet aware when the press release came out. Tost himself addressed the announcement.

Earlier, the Austrian said the news had not yet been scheduled to come out. Tost is stepping down as team boss at the end of the year and will be succeeded by Ferrari technical director Laurent Mekies. The news had apparently been leaked and to pre-empt further rumours and speculation, AlphaTauri released a press release.

AlphaTauri prevented further speculation

Tost explained in Baku to GPBlog and others why Tsunoda reacted with surprise: "I have to ask him why he was surprised," he said, laughing. "It's true, I didn't tell him because I didn't think of this. Because, once more, it was not planned to bring out this news already."

The retiring team boss also said he had no idea that the press statement would also come immediately. It sounds like the decision was in a hurry. Tost: "That's what the team did. If you read in the press that there are rumours, I could say 'no, I don't comment on rumours'. Well, I respect all of you and I don't want to tell useless lies."

Tost is not worried about Mekies leaving Ferrari

Tost also addressed the stories that Mekies would not be released at Ferrari in time to start immediately next year. So would Tost stay on for a while while waiting for Mekies? "I expect him, at least, by the end of the year. He will come, and otherwise Peter [Bayer] is there. It is something that Ferrari and Laurent have to sort out. It has nothing to do with us."

It seems to be a new trend in Formula 1 that highly qualified engineers of F1 teams are moving on to team-boss roles. This can be seen with McLaren's Andrea Stella and Mike Krack at Aston Martin and now with Mekies. Tost: "It looks like it's a good constellation [collaboration technical team boss and CEO]. After all, then you have one person being concentrated on the technical side and you have a second person who is more on the organisation, marketing and strategy for the future."

Video player

More videos