JANUARY 27, 2023
Alfa Romeo set to lose title sponsor
Having lost boss Frederic Vasseur to Ferrari, Sauber-run Alfa Romeo now looks set to lose its title sponsor.
Both Orlen, a Polish oil company, and its affiliated Polish driver Robert Kubica, are reportedly set to depart the Swiss-based team.
And while Orlen could take up residency with a less prominent role at Alpha Tauri this year, Kubica's test driving days in Formula 1 appear to be over.
As for Frenchman Vasseur, his duties at race weekends will now be taken up by Sauber managing director Alessandro Alunni Bravi - former manager of drivers including Stoffel Vandoorne.
However, Italian Alunni Bravi will not actually replace Vasseur as team principal. Instead, he will be 'team representative' reporting to new Sauber Group CEO Andreas Seidl.
It is believed German Seidl, who left McLaren at the end of last year, wanted to focus more on the team's forthcoming transition to Audi.
It is expected that Seidl will then become team principal in earnest from 2026 - or potentially earlier.
"Alessandro representing the team during the Formula 1 championship will allow me to focus on growing the group and preparing for the challenges and opportunities that await us," he confirmed.
Auto Motor und Sport speculates that while Audi wants German Seidl for its works F1 foray, Italian Allunni Bravi is a better pick for now for the remaining time in collaboration with Ferrari and Alfa Romeo.