F1 Today | Hamilton rejects upgrades and who could return to Alpine?

F1 News

f1 today lewis hamilton avoided monaco upgrade and briatore to return to F1
29 May at 19:24
Last update 29 May at 20:22
  • Ben Stevens

Lewis Hamilton, according to Mercedes teammate George Russell, was happy to give his teammate a new upgrade rather than take it himself at Monaco to avoid the risk of damaging the part. Flavio Briatore, former Renault team boss, could return to the Enstone team, with Alpine also setting their sights on Adrian Newey

Hamilton happy to give Russell upgrade

George Russell had an upgraded front wing on his W15 in Monaco, leading to speculation that the Silver Arrows were giving him preferential treatment over Lewis Hamilton, who departs the team at the end of the year for Ferrari.

However, according to Russell, it was Hamilton's decision not to take the new front wing as he didn't want to risk damaging it. Hamilton had crashed in practice during last years Monaco Grand Prix, lodging the car's front wing under the barrier. This could have been the reason behind Hamilton giving up the upgrade. 

You can read Russell's comments here! 

Briatore to return to F1 after 15 years 

Flavio Briatore hasn't been involved in Formula 1 since 2009, after the Crashgate scandal in which Nelson Piquet Jr. had to deliberately park his car in the wall to help Alonso to victory in Singapore that year. However, Renault CEO Luca de Meo wants Briatore to return to the Enstone team, in a 'special supervisor' role that doesn't require him to be at tracks. 

Alpine are also looking at Adrian Newey as part of a major recruitment campaign on the technical side of the team, in order to help progress the French squad further up the grid and be competitive in 2026. 

Former team principal warns Andretti 

Former Haas team principal Gunther Steiner has sent a warning to Andretti over their Formula 1 bid. Steiner has experience entering the sport with a new team, after a failed attempt with US F1 Team, before Haas successfully entered the sport in 2016. Speaking on The Red Flags podcast, Steiner discussed his time entering the sport with Haas, before saying that "Nobody is asking them to join", referring to Andretti's bid. 

However, even though FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem has suggested the American should look at taking over an existing team on the grid, this may not be an option for Andretti, who have already opened a new Silverstone facility. Sulayem hinted that some of the current grid shouldn't have their place in the F1 paddock, and Andretti would be better off investing in another team rather than focusing on becoming F1's 11th team. 

Haas pull out of NASCAR

Stewart-Haas Racing have announced they will close their doors and leave NASCAR at the end of the 2024 season. The team began in 2003, and since Tony Stewart joined Gene Haas' team and co-owner and driver in 2009, they have won two driver's championships and 69 races. 

This could potentially open the door for Gene Haas to focus all his money and effort on his Formula 1 operation after a disappointing Monaco Grand Prix weekend saw neither driver complete one lap in the race. Kevin Magnussen made contact with Sergio Perez heading up Beau Rivage, with Nico Hulkenberg unlucky to be caught by the spinning Red Bull. 

Bernie Collins calls Red Bull's car a risk 

After taking back-to-back driver's and constructors titles in 2022 and 2023, Red Bull chose to change their car concept heading into the 2024 season. Bernie Collins, former F1 strategist and Sky Sports F1 presenter, believes this is a risk for the team, and that they will struggle to upgrade the flaws of the car, opening the door for Ferrari and McLaren

Ferrari have taken two race wins in Australia and Monaco and McLaren won in Miami, but Red Bull still sit at the top of the constructor's standings. Despite this, they have been nowhere near as dominant as they have in previous seasons, with 45 fewer points than they had at the same stage last season.