Fernando Alonso is set to return to F1 next year with Renault (Or Alpine as they’ll be called). As his return date inches closer, the 2-times world champion believes the only way back into the sport was through his beloved Renault team.
The Spaniard, after all, saw his greatest days in F1 with the French team and shares an emotional bond with them. Even after he left for Ferrari and then McLaren, Alonso’s relationship with Renault stayed strong.
Speaking at Imola, where he has joined the team for the race, he said, “The only way to probably come back to F1 was with Renault.”
According to Alonso, his emotional connection with the team played a major role in him returning.
“(It is) an environment that I knew. It was like a family for me. So those two things were very special that day (when he signed with Renault).”
The Spaniard was honest in his admission that he won’t be getting his 2021 F1 season off to a flyer.
Alonso has kept himself busy after he left McLaren in 2018 by taking part in the Dakar Rally and the Indy 500. But F1 will be a whole different ball game. Despite a full pre-season, nothing can quite recreate the pressure that an actual race does.
He said, “Difficult to know now. But I guess it is going to take a couple of races, to be honest.
“The limited testing for next year is going to be a challenge for everyone. But a little more for me because I’m out of the car for two years. It’s going to be only one day and a half winter testing. So, you cannot prepare for a world championship in one day and a half.”
Before he prepares for a championship charge of any sorts, heck even before the days of winter testing, Alonso’s next task will be to suit up for a test with Renault in Bahrain.
The Spaniard will be testing out the 2018 spec Renault RS18, in a bid to shake off the rust and get back to grips with the sport. The two day test is set to be conducted on the 4th and 5th of November.
This will be his second test, having already had one in Barcelona earlier this month. That time he had tested the 2020 car and had driven it around the circuit for a 100kms.
The future Alpine man is doing everything he can in a bid to be ready for next season. Boy, will he be raring to go and show the world what they missed in the last two F1 seasons.