Formula 1 News: Fernando Alonso has never hidden his love-hate relationship with Lewis Hamilton. The Briton has managed to achieve statistical supremacy and seven championships. Yet, for Alonso, he is not the most special driver on the grid.
In a recent statement by Alonso, he has claimed that only two drivers are special on the current grid. He listed only Max Verstappen and George Russell in that criteria, excluding his former teammate.
“Those are the two drivers [Verstappen and Russell] who are special, who make the difference and who get more out of the actual performance of their cars,” he reiterated in conversation with F1insider.com. “The rest of the drivers only get the results that match the performance of their cars.”
He also excluded other exciting prospects on the grid, like Lando Norris, who currently stands P4 in the championship standings. Or Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz, who are competing despite the noticeable limitations of Ferrari.
Even his teammate Esteban Ocon is excluded, who in Hungary grabbed his first win with probably the sixth fastest car on the grid. In the season with more than six winners a year, there are certainly more people grinding results from their confined resources.
Formula 1 news: Fernando Alonso can still vie for the championship
Alonso returned to F1 after a two-year-long hiatus. His re-alliance with Alpine is playing a pivotal role in the French constructors’ progress. But Alonso thinks he can do more than stereotypical old-age drivers just developing an upcoming team.
He thinks at the age of 40 he can still battle for the championship. Though, not a wrong estimation, as he claims to be at the fitness of a 25-year-old F1 driver. And if his rival Hamilton can compete for the title at 36, why not him, if given a suitable car.
But he also views that Hamilton and Verstappen are doing a commendable job by fighting in the championship. He respects both drivers because of their efforts to bag the 2021 title.
“That’s hard to answer.” when asked if he can vie for the title “But yes, I would rely on myself to race for the title. But Lewis and Max are doing great in their teams. So there’s no clear answer to that.”
Formula 1 news: Can Fernando Alonso be Michael Schumacher of Alpine?
It is known what a terrific role Michael Schumacher played for Mercedes during the pre-turbo hybrid era. Mercedes even directly credits the former F1 driver for their following success to him.
Can Alonso do the same job in Alpine, which always had ambitious goals, even under its former name- Renault. Alpine has the potential to be a top team, but it’s a long way to go for them before they contest against the big teams.
Though 2022 regulations give them a golden opportunity to make a giant leap, Alonso probably lengthy tenure can facilitate it. The only possible doubt is Alonso’s last opportunity of working similarly with McLaren. The strained marriage between them was undoubtedly unpleasant, and after his departure, they unquestionably boomed. So it certainly doesn’t look good on Alonso’s CV.