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We’ve taken a look at 9 of the 10 cars that will make up the Formula 1 grid in 2023. Now, we can get a complete picture by taking a gander at the car Alpine’s duo of Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly will be wheeling around circuits this season: the A523.
Alpine — Formerly Renault, formerly Lotus, formerly Renault (again), formerly Benneton, formerly Toleman — unveiled its new car plus its reserve driver, F2 standout Jack Doohan and two liveries.
The A523 marks a significant departure from Alpine’s 2022 car, perhaps most notably on the front wing.
The car’s nose now connects to the leading edge of the front wing as opposed to the second wing element as it was in 2022.
At the other end of the car, the team has gone with pushrod rear suspension.
It’s clear that Alpine put a lot into developing this car, and it paid off. The car is underweight, which is a huge victory in this day and age where cars are massive. That’ll give them some more circuit-by-circuit flexibility with how they use ballast.
Alpine Is Targeting A More Commanding P4
While the team no doubt wants to get back World Championship contention like it was in its Renault days with Fernando Alonso and the Benneton days with Michael Schumacher before that.
Unless they have something big up their sleeve this season that will not happen. Team boss Otmar Szafnauer says the target is to close the gap to P3 in the constructors’ standings while building a gap to P5.
“A good year for us is being a lot closer to third,” he said. “There was a big gap between fourth and third last year, [so] being significantly closer to the top three and perhaps a little bit further away from fifth.”
Alpine was in a season-long battle with McLaren in 2022, and it wouldn’t be shocking to see that again. However, if the development of their new car works they might have the edge again.
They certainly have a more experienced driver lineup. Esteban Ocon returns for another season with the team. However, this year he’s joined by countryman Pierre Gasly to fill out the all-French pairing for the French team.
The two don’t exactly get along — like, at all — but the team says it’s all good. At least they’ve been doing a good job of pretending the hatchet has been buried.
I’m not sure how much Alpine will be able to close the gap, but I do like the idea of them holding steady at P4 this season, in another long battle with McLaren, which — as an F1 fan — is not a bad thing.
There you have it! We’ve looked at every 2023 car on the grid. If you missed one, here you go!
Now we turn our attention to pre-season testing in Bahrain next weekend. Then, on March 5 it’s the first race of the season, the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Follow on Twitter: @Matt_Reigle