Fernando Alonso Beats Himself Up for Not Leaving McLaren Earlier

Published 10/28/2021, 6:18 AM EDT
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – NOVEMBER 22: Fernando Alonso of Spain and McLaren F1 talks in the Drivers Press Conference during previews ahead of the Abu Dhabi Formula One Grand Prix at Yas Marina Circuit on November 22, 2018 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)


Fernando Alonso joined hands with Alpine earlier this season, a mid-field team that is still pursuing their target of making it to the top of the standings. However, many questioned whether a driver like Alonso, who potentially had gone past his prime, was the perfect fit for the team with such huge ambitions.

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Well, in the end, the entire F1 paddock realized that Alonso is now as good as ever, and the Spaniard quite blatantly proved that age is just a number. Over 15 years after clinching his last world championship title, he looks at the top of his game against much younger guns like Esteban Ocon, George Russell, Lando Norris, and others.

But, even for a driver as successful as Alonso, there are going to be regrets about the past. So, what is Alonso’s regret?

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What did Fernando Alonso say?

As reported by Marca, Alonso felt that he should have left the Great Circus in 2015 or 2016 rather than wasting such prime years in a car that just didn’t have the potential to compete for points.

Formula One F1 – Hungarian Grand Prix – Hungaroring, Budapest, Hungary – August 1, 2021 Alpine’s Esteban Ocon celebrates with teammate Fernando Alonso after winning the race Pool via REUTERS/Florion Goga

Instead of spending the extra couple of years in F1, Alonso reckoned that he could have moved to Dakar and Endurance which would have helped him further in the return to F1 this season.

I left too late. I should have left earlier. Now it’s easy to say but I shouldn’t have waited until 2018. I should have done it in 2015 or 2016. Two years before. To test Dakar and endurance. It took me a while to mature, maybe too much,” he told L’Equippe. (Translated via Google Translate)

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Does Alonso hold the tools to win his 3rd F1 title?

When Alonso made his return to F1, it looked like it was a bit too late for Alonso to challenge for the title. And of course, it was reasonable enough, as he was then inching towards the 40-mark in age. But, boy, did he return with a bang!

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Formula One F1 – Belgian Grand Prix – Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium – August 28, 2021 Alpine’s Fernando Alonso during practice REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

He is still the old Alonso that once laid rampage over the F1 grid in the mid-2000s. Hence, all that Alonso needs is a decent enough car to challenge the big guns like Red Bull, Ferrari, and Mercedes.

And amidst the potential mix-up in the offing, the vision of Alonso celebrating on the podium is certainly plausible. But, again, all eyes will land on the team and their 2022 challenger, which is in the making behind closed doors.

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So, will Alpine pull off a miracle to put Alonso right on top of the charts next season?

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Rohit Kumar

1413 articles

Rohit Kumar is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been an ardent follower of the racing series since 2007, with his love for the sport coinciding with his love for Kimi Raikkonen. He is also an ardent follower of Sebastian Vettel and Aston Martin Racing.

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