Alpine has launched its 2021 Formula 1 car, the A521.
Esteban Ocon was on hand to reveal the new car, though Fernando Alonso was a conspicuous absence as he continues his pre-season preparations following a cycling accident last month in Switzerland and subsequent surgery.
The team has rebranded from Renault since last season, instead competing under the iconic Alpine name as the Groupe Renault focuses on its performance brand in motor sport.
Alonso of course returns to the team he won both of his F1 titles with back in the mid-2000s, rejoining the Enstone team for a third spell in his career.
“I am extremely happy to be back after two years away from Formula 1,” the Spaniard said of the team’s launch.
“I’m very motivated heading into this new chapter with Alpine, and it’s of course very special to be back with the team I achieved so much with in the past.
“The spirit is very strong at both factories in Enstone and Viry-Chatillon, and we’re all very excited for what’s ahead.”
Proudly representing the colours of the French and British flags, as well as Alpine’s illustrious and historic racing colours of blue, white and red… Here is our 2021 F1 car, the A521!#A521Launch 💙 pic.twitter.com/AwDI1RNtaE
— Alpine F1 Team (@AlpineF1Team) March 2, 2021
For the new season, the team has switched out its yellow look for the blue of Alpine, replacing the black ‘launch’ version it revealed months ago.
With the departure of Cyril Abiteboul, Laurent Rossi will take up the positions of Alpine CEO, while new recruit from Suzuki’s MotoGP team Davide Brivio moves into the role of Racing Director. Rossi said the rebranded team would be aiming to rise to the top step of Formula 1 once again.
“Today we are proud to present Alpine F1 Team’s first-ever Formula 1 car that will compete in the 2021 championship. This is an important milestone for Alpine, as it positions itself as the brand at the forefront of Groupe Renault’s innovation.
“Alpine naturally finds its place in the high standards, prestige and performance of Formula 1 and we’re eagerly anticipating the debut of the A521 piloted by our drivers, two-time Formula 1 World Drivers’ Champion Fernando Alonso and Esteban Ocon. This year our objective is clear, to continue the momentum that was garnered last year and fight for podiums.
“Our long-term vision is to see the Alpine name on the top step of the podium in Formula 1. Motorsports is in our DNA and now is the time for Alpine colours to race and compete in the pinnacle of motor racing in Formula 1.”
The team will give the A521 a shakedown at Silverstone on Wednesday before heading out to Bahrain for pre-season testing from March 12-14.