Formula 1
Formula 1
R
Emilia Romagna GP
18 Apr
Race in
42 days
R
Portuguese GP
02 May
Race in
56 days
09 May
Next event in
59 days
23 May
Race in
77 days
R
Azerbaijan GP
06 Jun
Race in
91 days
13 Jun
Race in
98 days
27 Jun
Race in
112 days
04 Jul
Next event in
115 days
18 Jul
Race in
133 days
R
Hungarian GP
01 Aug
Race in
147 days
29 Aug
Race in
175 days
05 Sep
Race in
182 days
12 Sep
Race in
189 days
26 Sep
Race in
203 days
R
Singapore GP
03 Oct
Next event in
206 days
10 Oct
Race in
217 days
R
United States GP
24 Oct
Race in
231 days
31 Oct
Race in
238 days
R
Australian GP
21 Nov
Race in
259 days
R
Saudi Arabia GP
05 Dec
Race in
273 days
R
Abu Dhabi GP
12 Dec
Race in
280 days

Alonso: "Rossi is an inspiration for me to keep going"

Fernando Alonso says he’s in career-best form despite being in the twilight of his time in Formula 1, and that Valentino Rossi’s MotoGP form acts as an inspiration.

Alonso: "Rossi is an inspiration for me to keep going"
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MP4-31
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MP4-31
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MP4-31
Fernando Alonso, McLaren in parc ferme
Valentino Rossi, Moto GP rider, on the grid
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MP4-31
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MP4-31
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MP4-31
Fernando Alonso and Valentino Rossi

At 35 years of age, and in his 15th season of grand prix racing, Alonso says he doesn’t feel like a veteran who’s beginning to lose his best form.

Instead, the McLaren driver swears he’s actually in career-best form, combining talent with a detailed understanding of how to get the best out of a car.

“I don’t think that my time in Formula 1 is over,” he said.

“I think I am driving at my best level now, and I have knowledge about the cars and the technical situation that allows me to push the car a little bit more to the limit.

"I’m very calm about the situation, I have a contract next year with this team again.”

The belief that should McLaren find front-running form again Alonso could challenge for world titles comes from 37-year-old MotoGP star Rossi, says the Spaniard.

“After some years that you are not fighting for the championship but you keep going, going, going, you know, sooner or later you will show your talent – as Valentino is doing now,” said Alonso.

“That’s a kind of inspiration for us. You need to trust in yourself, and when you have the bike or the car that performs at the best level you will be there.

"Because you cannot forget how to ride a bike, or how to drive a car, in two or three years.”

2017 regs still key to career longevity

Alonso also reinforced that it will be the 2017 regulations, not McLaren’s competitiveness, that determines whether or not he continues beyond the end of next season.

“I think that my biggest question is how I enjoy driving next year’s car; if the rules stay as they are now, and I have to save fuel, I have to save tyres, I have to drive 90 per cent and I cannot push in any of the laps, then next year will be my last year,” he said.

“Not because I’m not competitive, even if I win the championship next year, I stop because I prefer other things more.

“It’s not about what results I have next year, or how competitive McLaren is. It’s about how the Formula 1 car goes, in which direction.”

He added that even offers from Mercedes or Red Bull wouldn’t be enough to keep him in F1 if the 2017 rules don’t grab his attention.

“The answer would be that in 2017 I have a contract in McLaren, and then in 2018 I will see how the cars excite me to drive. I don’t think that I’m now motivated to a competitive car or a change in team.

“Of course I want to win, and I want to do it as soon as possible. But next year I have a contract with McLaren, and the following year, it will not be related to car performance whether I continue or not.”

Interview by Jonathan Noble

shares
comments
Renault set for September decision on drivers

Previous article

Renault set for September decision on drivers

Next article

Analysis: Five drivers with a point to prove over the second half of F1 2016

Analysis: Five drivers with a point to prove over the second half of F1 2016
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Fernando Alonso , Valentino Rossi
Teams McLaren
Author Andrew van Leeuwen
The updates Williams hopes will lead to a point-scoring return Prime

The updates Williams hopes will lead to a point-scoring return

After producing a car which demonstrated progress but lacked the points to prove it last year, Williams starts its new era of team ownership with the FW43B, its bid to continue the climb up the Formula 1 grid in 2021

Formula 1
Mar 5, 2021
How Ferrari plans to recover from its 2020 F1 nightmare Prime

How Ferrari plans to recover from its 2020 F1 nightmare

The 2020 Formula 1 season was Ferrari's worst for 40 years as it slumped to sixth in the standings. A repeat performance will not be acceptable for the proud Italian team, which has adopted a notably pragmatic approach to forging its path back to the top

Formula 1
Mar 4, 2021
Why Aston Martin’s arrival is more than just new green livery Prime

Why Aston Martin’s arrival is more than just new green livery

In the most eagerly anticipated Formula 1 team launch of the season, the rebranded Aston Martin squad’s changes go much further than the striking paint job. But rather than a restart, the team hopes to build on top of solid foundations.

Formula 1
Mar 3, 2021
The car Aston Martin begins its new F1 journey with Prime

The car Aston Martin begins its new F1 journey with

The team formerly known as Racing Point gambled successfully on a Mercedes look-alike in 2020 as it mounted a strong challenge for third in the constructors' race and won the Sakhir GP. Now clothed in British racing green, Aston Martin's first Formula 1 challenger since 1960 provides the clearest indicator yet of what to expect from the new-for-2021 regulations

Formula 1
Mar 3, 2021
The tricky driver conundrums facing Mercedes in F1 2021 Prime

The tricky driver conundrums facing Mercedes in F1 2021

Ahead of the new Formula 1 season, reigning world champions Mercedes will take on challenges both old and new. This also can be said for its driver conundrum which could become key to sustaining its ongoing success...

Formula 1
Mar 2, 2021
How Alpine's cure to 2021 F1 rules starts at the front Prime

How Alpine's cure to 2021 F1 rules starts at the front

A new name, new faces and new colours pulls the rebranded Alpine Formula 1 team into a new era while carrying over core elements of its 2020 car. But under the surface there's more than meets the eye with the A521 which hints at how the team will tackle 2021...

Formula 1
Mar 2, 2021
Can Mercedes' W12 retain the team's crown? Prime

Can Mercedes' W12 retain the team's crown?

Replacing Formula 1's fastest car was never going to be an easy feat for Mercedes. Amid the technical rule tweaks to peg back the W12 and its 2021 rivals, the new Mercedes challenger will remain the target to beat

Formula 1
Mar 2, 2021
The pointed note that starts Ferrari's Leclerc vs Sainz era Prime

The pointed note that starts Ferrari's Leclerc vs Sainz era

Ferrari is starting its post-Sebastian Vettel age by welcoming Carlos Sainz in alongside Charles Leclerc. But while Sainz has a tough challenge to match his new teammate, Ferrari is also sending a message that previous intra-team spats must end

Formula 1
Mar 2, 2021