David Sanchez has completed a move to the Alpine F1 team following his brief spell at rivals McLaren.

The Frenchman has been announced as executive technical director, a newly-created role at Alpine, which will see him oversee the entire technical department at Enstone.

Ciaron Pilbeam (technical director, performance), Joe Burnell (technical director, engineering) and David Wheater (technical director, aerodynamics) will all report directly to Sanchez.

It marks a return to Enstone for Sanchez, who started his career at the team under their Renault guise as a junior aerodynamicist in 2005.

Sanchez has started work immediately at Alpine having left McLaren just three months after joining following a “misalignment”. He previously worked for Ferrari. 

“I’m excited by this challenge at Alpine. I’m looking forward to working at Enstone again, the place where I started my Formula 1 career,” Sanchez said.

“This team has always had so many fantastic people involved and there is clearly so much potential to unlock. We have a big task ahead to improve on-track performance and it is this type of challenge that motivates me. I’m very much ready to begin and look forward to working with the Enstone-Viry technical teams again with the sole aim of bringing regular success back to this great team.”

The hiring of Sanchez bolsters the struggling Anglo-French outfit’s technical department following a dreadful start to the 2024 season.

Alpine are yet to score a point across the opening five rounds and remain anchored to the very bottom of the constructors’ championship.

“I am delighted to welcome David back to Enstone, where he started his career back in 2005,” Alpine team principal Bruno Famin said. “This is a key appointment to ensure we are optimising everything we do as a team and focusing on the right performance areas.

“It is clear that the performance of the car and development path has not moved at a sufficient pace relative to our ambitions as a team. We look forward to welcoming David and working hard together to achieve the ultimate success.”