“I Never Fear Anything”: Fernando Alonso Channels His Inner Samurai to Reclaim the Honor Lost to Lewis Hamilton

Published 09/20/2023, 3:44 PM EDT

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Fernando Alonso isn’t your run-of-the-mill F1 driver. He’s dangerous. He’s relentless. You could say, he’s almost like a Samurai! The racing gods seemed to have bestowed him with eternal youth, but while his body may be aging, in his mind he’s still as hungry as that young Spanish charger who made his debut in this sport way back in 2001. Be that as it may, what really makes Alonso such a fierce competitor is his attitude. And there is a special connection that he shares with the Japanese Grand Prix that is going to come to the very forefront this weekend.

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It’s been a season of highs and lows for the Spaniard in 2023. The Aston Martin talisman was blessed with a pacey AMR23 when the season began. Now, that pace seems to have declined, as the Silverstone-based team seemingly has been out-developed by the competition, but Alonso has still been dragging that car to the very zenith of its capabilities every single race. But are we going to see the best Alonso at the 2023 Japanese GP?

“Fight for only one goal”: Fernando Alonso’s Samurai mindset and tattoo

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Despite the recent lack of pace that Aston Martin has suffered, which was accentuated by Alonso once again losing out on a podium to his closest rival, Lewis Hamilton at the 2023 Singapore GP, the man from Oviedo is relentlessly chasing that elusive 33rd win. If you ask him, he’ll fight till the bitter end, even if there is just a 1% chance of winning. That’s his Samurai mindset. And he lives and breathes it.

Alonso has literally embodied the Samurai spirit. Speaking about his Samurai tattoo, grandprix247 quoted the 42-year-old as explaining the meaning and significance of it. He said, “I think a racing driver and a samurai are very linked. Discipline, self-confidence, no fear. We fight for only one goal, which is to win. [The] tattoo is a way for me to remember who I am, where I come from and the strength I possess.”

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And in the buildup to the Grand Prix this weekend which is to be run in the land of the Samurai, Alonso epitomized his beliefs by declaring, “We fight for only one goal, which is to win,” as he looks to leave Hamilton in his dust.

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And if there is any place where the Spanish racing ace can conjure his inner Samurai to wreak havoc on his rivals, it has to be Suzuka, and he has come prepared.

Fernando Alonso’s Samurai helmet for the Japanese GP 

Alonso is back at his spiritual home, Japan. And on the eve of the 2023 Japanese Grand Prix, the 2x champion has made his intentions clear. If the sight of Alonso in the mirrors of his rivals wasn’t intimidating enough, he has chosen to add a striking new helmet design to land that final blow as he chases glory.

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“I never fear anything,” is what Alonso told the world as he unveiled his tribute helmet. According to the pictures released online, the helmet he’ll run during the GP weekend also dons the tattoo he has commemorating his Samurai roots.

Watch this Story: Will Aston Martin F1 Ditch Mercedes to Partner with Honda for 2026?

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Life would come full circle for Alonso if he could secure a win at the Suzuka Circuit. Can Fernando Alonso bag his 33rd F1 win at the 2023 Japanese Grand Prix?

 

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Written by:

Anirban Aly Mandal

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Anirban Aly Mandal is a senior F1 writer at EssentiallySports, with over 1000 articles published on the platform. Anirban's love for F1 started when he discovered a copy of F1 2014 while playing on his computer, and he has since then dived deep into the world of motorsports. Anirban's expertise goes beyond just writing - he has also written several academic papers focused on the domain of motorsports.
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Edited by:

Akash Pandhare

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