AlphaTauri

Points 27 Position Team 8 Power Unit Red Bull Powertrains
Founded 2020 Based Faenza

After a sterling year in 2020 that saw Pierre Gasly climb on top of the podium in Monza, he showed his worth once again in 2021 for an AlphaTauri team that has shown flashes of even potentially moving beyond Formula 1's midfield.

Back in 2006, Formula 1 saw the first Scuderia Toro Rosso, AlphaTauri's predecessor line up on the grid. The team, previously Paul Stoddart's Minardi, had been bought as Red Bull Racing's junior team, a place where they could train drivers away from the pressure before promoting them to the senior team.

The philosophy behind Toro Rosso/AlphaTauri has meant that the Formula 1 team has always been in the lower half of the pack, a training ground more than a place to get the results.

That, though, didn't stop Sebastian Vettel.

Back in 2008 the German made history as he made the most of the conditions at a wet Monza circuit, taking the team's first-ever pole position. A day later he did the unthinkable as he followed that up with the race win, Toro Rosso's first and only win under that marque.

The team added two further podiums in 2019. Daniil Kvyat, returning to Toro Rosso after being axed from the programme after the 2017 season, was third in a chaotic German GP while Gasly, demoted to Toro Rosso after failing to make the grade at Red Bull, was second in Brazil.

Their efforts meant Toro Rosso, running a Honda engine for the second year in succession, finished the championship in sixth place. That matched their best previous performance from Vettel's race-winning 2008 season.

For 2020 Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz rebranded Toro Rosso to AlphaTauri, reflecting his company's new venture in the fashion world.

And on the track it certainly did them no harm as Gasly repeated Vettel's heroics by winning the Italian Grand Prix at Monza, a second win for the team and again on home soil, the stuff of dreams!

For 2021, AlphaTauri welcomed Yuki Tsunoda into the team as Gasly's new team-mate, marking the realisation of Honda's long-held wish to bring a Japanese driver into Formula 1.

But Tsunoda is no charity case. After only arriving in Europe a few years ago, his sublime form in F3 and F2 justified a swift promotion to Formula 1, but he struggled to show his class from his junior days. He has been given another chance for 2022, something he admitted himself came as something of a surprise to him.

Gasly continued his resurgent form too, brilliantly proving after his demotion that speed can still be found. He broke the 100-point barrier in a season for the first time, while adding another podium finish to his tally in Azerbaijan. Perhaps a senior seat awaits him elsewhere for 2023?