The best Spanish Formula One driver of all time. The true king, Fernando Alonso, is back. It is nearly impossible for any racing enthusiast to contain the emotions and desire to see him succeed.
There is a huge possibility that the Spanish might overshadow projects such as Red Bull’s hunt for Mercedes, Lewis Hamilton’s eighth title, Vettel’s rebirth at Aston Martin, or the arrival of talents like Mick Schumacher.
The two-time champion plans to launch his comeback with Renault renamed Alpine Formula One Team. He is here to help the team regain its stature and will try to lay the foundations for an intention that aims to last.
Recently, he was in the news because of his road accident. Now completely recovered, Fernando Alonso was in the hospital. He was under surveillance after the jaw surgery. While cycling on the outskirts of Lugano in Switzerland, he was hit by a car. But the garage seems to be up and running. The alpine team tweeted they are now satisfied and Alonso thanked his fans.
Alpine F1 Team Statement pic.twitter.com/P2yXlpyCBj
— Alpine F1 Team (@AlpineF1Team) February 12, 2021
Fernando Alonso comes with experience
The Alpine F1 team has also revealed its launch date. The car for the 2021 season will be seen first on March 2. The same day reigning world champion team Mercedes “W12E Performance” will do so too.
Alonso is well aware of the scenarios that the year 2021 will create on the circuit. Several teams like McLaren, Alpine, Ferrari, or Aston Martin could be just within a reach of a few tenths. A tough battle and hazards of the race might be a common scene this year. But if he is hoping to be 10th or 15th place on the grid, it will be intriguing to watch 24 Hours of Le Mans (2018 & 2019) winner, return to Formula One.
Along with the Frenchman, Esteban Ocon. Reserves like Alpine Academy drivers: Guanyu Zhou, Christian Lundgaard, and defending Formula 3 champion Oscar Piastri. Alonso will have to lead the team during his multi-year contract.
Alpine Formula One’s Chief Executive Officer, Laurent Rossi, will look forward to the knowledge and experience Alonso can bring to the garage.
“ Fernando has almost 20 years of experience in Formula 1. His experience is invaluable to young drivers. I’m sure he will be an inspiration to the team. He took the time to get to know the current Academy pilots. ” Rossi said.
— Fernando Alonso (@alo_oficial) July 8, 2020
Expect it to be a transitional year
Fernando has only signed for two seasons with the French manufacturers. There might be a possibility where he wishes to extend his contract for at least another year. And as the pre-testing season is getting close, the possibility of such an extension is gaining more pace.
Many of the experts think Alonso will be amongst the best drivers to adapt to 2021 season changes in engine rules and new regulations. Formula one is going to go through evolution for the next five years, and the Spanish driver would want to extend his stay in the grid.
All fired up for our 2021 launch, join us virtually on the 2nd March 2021!
💙 Save The Date 💙 pic.twitter.com/R2mGKJAnLe
— Alpine F1 Team (@AlpineF1Team) February 16, 2021
Taking part in other competitions and other challenges like Dakar Rally, Indianapolis 500, etc kept him alive. Now, as a much smarter and more complete driver, he will be thinking of attacking the Triple Crown.
Subsequently, his maturity tells us how well he’s planning for a long race.
“I didn’t start thinking about that yet – I think we are too early into preparations,” said the Spanish.
“Maybe after the winter test you can imagine or dream about the first race and where you can be. Right now, I didn’t have any thoughts about that.”
“Our job is to be at least fighting for the top 10”
“Realistically, we have to have our feet on the ground,” he added, “knowing that even if there are some changes for this year, they are not dramatic, so performance will not be too different compared to last year.”
“I think Mercedes will be in front of everybody, then there will be Red Bull and there will be a close fight between a few teams. Alpine will be within that group of teams and that will be interesting to see who adapts better to the new regulations. I think it will be very tight, so we could be fighting for sixth or seventh on the grid or it could be 15th very easily. Our job is to be at least fighting for the top 10.”
Many think it might be difficult for Fernando to immediately get back to the level where Daniel Ricciardo left the car. Not only that, he will only get a day and a half of preseason to adapt to his new car.
“I said at the time that the  car was faster than me in terms of everything coming quicker than I expected,” he said.
“I had to adapt to the braking points, the cornering speeds I had to rethink a little bit as I approached a corner.”
Post-2020 season test in Abu Dhabi, Alonso got to lap in R.S.20.
“All those things were… not new, as I have a good memory, but my last two races were at Indy and Dakar. So you arrive at a corner with a 4×4 car and then the next time you drive you are arriving at Turn 1 at Barcelona in a Formula 1 car… and it’s day and night!” he summed up.