Former Red Bull Driver Explains Where Fernando Alonso Lacks in Comparison to Lewis Hamilton

Published 03/29/2021, 9:34 AM EDT
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – NOVEMBER 22: Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP and Fernando Alonso of Spain and McLaren F1 talk 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)


The biggest talking point from the season-opener in Bahrain was the phenomenal victory of Lewis Hamilton. The Briton drove a superb race and won against the odds. However, what went under the radar was Fernando Alonso’s return to F1 after a two-year sabbatical.

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It was an eventful race for Alonso as he was holding himself well in the mid-field until he, unfortunately, had to retire because of an issue with the brake ducts. His former compatriot, Mark Webber, recognized his strengths and weakness as a racing driver.

Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – March 25, 2021 Alpine’s Fernando Alonso during the press conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS

“When he was at his peak, I don’t think there were many on that Sunday afternoons in terms of that repeated levels of lap times. All conditions, pretty hand,” Webber said on the Podcast ‘On the Marbles’ alongside David Coulthard.

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“(But) Not so much in full wet conditions. He was never really that strong in my opinion. But mixed conditions and that normal driving Grand Prix, he was amazing.”

He wasn’t quite the master in wet weather conditions like Ayrton Senna or Lewis Hamilton. While Senna gave us the famous opening lap at the Donington Park in 1993, Hamilton won a thrilling race in Turkey just last season.

‘Lewis Hamilton pips Fernando Alonso in qualifying,’ said Mark Webber

Unfortunately for Alonso, wet weather isn’t the only area where Lewis has a stronghold over him.

According to the former Red Bull driver, “Over one lap, (Alonso is) not the fastest in the world, still pretty handy don’t get me wrong. But not the quickest over one lap compared to some other guys like a Lewis Hamilton.”

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SAO PAULO, BRAZIL – OCTOBER 18: (L-R) Mclaren Mercedes team mates Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Fernando Alonso of Spain appear at the drivers press conference during previews prior to the Brazilian Formula One Grand Prix at the Autodromo Interlagos in Sao Paulo, Brazil. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

And Hamilton has got the official statistics to back Mark Webber’s claim as well. During their solitary season together as McLaren teammates in 2007, Hamilton edged Alonso in this category. While the defending double-champion could only muster two pole positions, the British rookie took pole on Saturday a mammoth six times.

It is very impressive, especially considering that Hamilton went as the severe underdog to Alonso. Many expected the Spaniard to run all over the rookie. However, Lewis not only held his own, but also beat him in his debut season. Clearly, it was a sign of things to come.

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DIVE DEEPER

‘It Never got Public’: Fernando Alonso Reveals Truth Behind Struggles Against ‘Rookie’ Hamilton at Mclaren

6 months ago

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Bharat Aggarwal

757 articles

Bharat Aggarwal is a sports analyst for EssentiallySports, covering Formula 1 and NBA. A Delhi University graduate, Bharat has multi-year experience in sports writing, having closely worked with the content strategy aspect as well. Bharat Aggarwal supports Manchester United, Lewis Hamilton, Cristiano Ronaldo, Rafael Nadal, Dirk Nowitzki, Sachin Tendulkar, Ayrton Senna, Kristaps Porzingis, and Dallas Mavericks.

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