Prost Grand Prix

Address Quartier des Sanglais
7, Avenue Eugene Freyssinet
F-78286 Guyancourt Cedex,
Team Principles Alain Prost FRA (1997-2001)
Designers Alan Jenkins GBR (1999-2000)
Loic Bigois
FRA (1997-2000)
Andre de Cortanze FRA (1997-98)

Prost AP01

Prost Team History & Record

In February of 1997 former World Champion (4 times) Alain Prost acquired the Ligier team and signed an exclusive 3 year engine agreement with Peugeot starting with the 1998 season. For 1997 the team runs the Mugen Honda engines and #2 driver Shinji Nakano inherited from the Ligier operation.  After a good start to the season (Olivier Panis taking a 2nd and a 3rd place finish) the French driver was badly hurt during the Canadian GP and young Italian Jarno Trulli was drafted from the Minardi team to replace him. Trulli performed well earning him a full time drive the following season, while Panis made a remarkable recovery and drove in the final 3 races!

Even though the company had been working with first McLaren and then Jordan since 1994 the switch to Peugeot power proved to be a disaster for the team.  The lack of reliability together with the high weight and size of the engine (compared to the leading powerplants) saw the drivers struggle to make it to the finish.  Coupled with this were the problems involved in relocating the team to a new factory outside of Paris and conflict between the in-house design team and John Barnard, whose  B3 Technologies firm was brought in as consultants.

Things got no better in 1999 and as the 2000 season approached it became Peugeot was not willing to make the same kind of capital investment in its F1 program that was being made by the likes of Mercedes or BMW.  Despite the considerable efforts of Jean Alesi (a longtime friend of Alain Prost) and German Nick Heidfeld (a McLaren Mercedes protégé) the team was unable to score a single Championship point and the inevitable announcement was made that Peugeot were withdrawing from the sport at the end of the 2000 season.  Also lost was longtime title sponsor Gauloises, the French tobacco company. 

Prost spent most of the 2000 season looking for an engine deal, until finally signing a 3 year agreement with Ferrari to supply both 2000 specification engines and gearboxes.  The management and technical staff were also reorganized, recruiting former Benetton team manager Joan Villadelprat and taking on Pedro Diniz as a minority shareholder. However the losses continued to mount and the team was unable to locate sufficient sponsorship during 2001, leading to the team being placed into receivership during the off-season.  After much speculation and negotiations with potential investors, the French bankruptcy judge presiding over the team order their assets to be liquidated at the end of January 2002.  

Year Chassis Engine Tyre # / Drivers Start Win Pole F Lap Pts Pos
1997 JS45 Mugen MH301H V10 BS 25 Panis, Trulli (7 races)
26 Nakano
17 0 0 0 21 6th
1998 AP01 Peugeot A16 V10 BS 11 Panis
12 Trulli
16 0 0 0 1 9th
1999 AP02 Peugeot A18 V10 BS 18 Panis
19 Trulli
16 0 0  0 9 7th

Year Chassis Engine Tyre # / Drivers Start Win Pole F Lap Pts Pos
2000 AP03 Peugeot A20 V10 BS 14 Alesi
15 Heidfeld
17 0 0  0 0 -
2001 AP04 Ferrari 049 V10 MI 22 Alesi, Frentzen
23 Mazzacane, Burti, Enge
17 0 0  0 4 9th


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