The relationship between Oscar Piastri and Alpine has been one of the main stories this season, as developments constantly emerged about their relationship throughout the summer.
Alpine’s announcement declaring Piastri’s “promotion” was swiftly met by a statement from the 21-year-old denying that he would compete with the French squad.
Since then, McLaren’s contract with Piastri has been upheld, though there is still uncertainty about who Alpine will choose to join the team after the unexpected departures of Piastri and Alonso.
In an interview shared by formula1.com, Laurent Rossi explained how significantly Alpine invested in the development and preparation of Oscar Piastri:
“We very quickly devised a training programme and a 5,000km testing programme, which started in February alongside Fernando Alonso and Esteban Ocon – that’s a serious training programme.
“You’re driving with two F1 drivers; you will learn from them. He drove 3,700km by August.
“We would have easily obtained the 5,000km. We gave him full access to the team, debriefs, technical meetings, and he was with me most Sundays listening to the race.
“Not only was he a reserve, but he would have been the most trained rookie ever. He knew how the team operated, how an F1 driver is supposed to operate in the team.
“We feel like we delivered. We went above and beyond. We hired a person just to find him a seat [with a team outside Alpine] because we wanted to do that properly. By the end of April, we found him a seat at Williams.
“When the Williams opportunity was about to turn into a concrete deal, so much so that the seat fitting was scheduled, they [Piastri’s team] said ‘we have a possible opportunity at McLaren’.
“It was a bit disappointing. We felt it was a bit strange, we expected a bit more loyalty considering how much we put in there. He [Piastri] didn’t say he was going to go. He said he had an opportunity…
“We never knew for a fact he had signed [with McLaren]. He never told us. We still believed the Williams seat was a great one, a great opportunity to learn with a bit less pressure.”