With McLaren Honda’s current struggles, it would be a surprise if we saw Fernando Alonso with the same team in 2018. There have been talks about him quitting the team mid-season. But that seems highly unlikely.
Alonso was running in the points in the season opener at Melbourne, until a suspension failure forced him to retire. He went on to say that it was the best race he ever drove. McLaren were clearly the slowest car on track. It takes a lot of skill to take such a car and qualify as high as Alonso did and to fight for points.
Alonso’s frustration with the team is quite visible and it is easy to understand his feelings. He moved to McLaren from Ferrari as he thought they’d never be good enough over an entire year to win a championship. His decision seems to have back fired. It would be a surprise if he stayed at McLaren for next year.
He has been praising Ferrari and their effort quite a bit lately. Fernando might fancy a move back to the Scuderia for 2018. This is likely to be Kimi Raikkonen’s last season in F1 as his one year deal ends. This would mean an empty seat in a car strong enough to fight for the Championship and so Alonso will obviously be interested.
Another seat up for grabs next year could be that of Valtteri Bottas. His contract with Mercedes is only a year long. Alonso has shown interest in the team before. And no doubt Toto Wolff would be getting a lot of calls from Alonso’s manager. His history with Hamilton as his teammate isn’t great from their season together at McLaren in 2007. This would be one thing on Toto’s mind if he considers Alonso for 2018.
Alonso will be 36 at start of next season. He’ll be looking for a move to a team where he can compete for wins and not for a long term project like he did with McLaren Honda. Mercedes and Ferrari seem like the only viable options while a switch back to Renault after their return is unlikely, but anything is possible in F1