2017 it will be the third year of Fernando Alonso in the second stage of his McLaren, the fourth in the structure of Woking counting his first season in 2007. The pilot spaniard, who this year will blow the candles for the 36th time, is, again, one of the great unknowns of this season, like his own team. For more than a decade, he won his second and last world champion title, and the time to get the third one starts to stir, more so when the results do not accompany this ambition.
Alonso, however, remains confident in his chances, and persists in the internal conviction that, sooner or later, it will look a third twisted in the displays of its museum. So has confessed to Adam Cooper in a statement to Motorsport. The pilot spaniard posted almost 4 years without a victory, and almost half a decade since that was considered a contender for the title of champion, but says not to be obsessed with it, and considers himself lucky having been several years in the gap.
“In 2007 was one point, with Vettel were three and four. I would like to win the championship, but I can’t get started with that single objective every year of my career, because sometimes you end up second, sometimes you end up fifth, sometimes you end up eighth, and you have that feeling of how to cope with that frustration and that pain. And there is no pain at all. I have the best job in the world and I am riding at the best level of my career. So I will start the year with many hopes that this project is finally competitive, and fighting for great things. Every pilot dreams of being a champion; I’m not different. I have had the good fortune of fighting for the many championships, and have great results, but I don’t have dreams or goals different from those of anyone in the paddock.
Alonso is fully aware of that the concept of the Formula 1 has always been the conjunction of all the elements to get the glory, and that not only depends on the pilot. Consider, again, that this is what makes the category is what it is: “That is also the good thing about Formula 1, which has this component, about the car, about the package and about to make all of the races are not predictable, anything can happen. I’ve been racing in karts many years, and in different categories before Formula 1, where all the cars were the same, and I’ve won in each category. I Understand the Formula 1, and I also understand that I have been very fortunate to win some championships“.
This third, or fourth, year at McLaren will have very little to do at the organisational level with regard to the above, after Ron Dennis, the figure on which has fallen all the responsibilities and decisions of the team since the early 80’s, has been forced to abandon the ship. Now, Zak Brown is the new visible head, under which McLaren will launch its fourth great period of history after the own Bruce McLaren, Teddy Mayer and the above-mentioned Dennis.
Alonso asserts that the key to his return to McLaren was not the influence of Ron Dennis, if not the historical prestige of the team, which he dates back to his earliest childhood, and in particular, the union with Honda. Even knowing the long road ahead of me, and that he still has to face, Alonso is shown sure that, if there is any website in the which will be proclaimed three-time, is McLaren.
“I joined at McLaren by Ron, I joined McLaren because the project seemed very attractive in 2015. I grew up watching on television the union between McLaren and Honda. My first kart was a replica of a McLaren that my father made me, so there are many things of this union, which turned out to be very attractive. I’ve had five fantastic years, with two years in which there was perhaps more frustration, so I felt it was the right time to join this project, fully motivated. I knew it was a risky decision in terms of results, because the project was very new. We are very far from fighting for the championship, but we are improving, and I think I’m in the right place to do so”.
To this end, they must overcome a competition more difficult than ever, starting with a Mercedes that plays with the letters marked by the superiority of its power unit turbo-hybrid. In own words of the Spanish driver, “I don’t think anyone can beat Mercedes, unfortunately, because they have a great advantage“, but believes that there is room to be hopeful with the change of regulations: “By now, you are doing an amazing job. With these turbo engines, have been ahead of everyone for years. The advantage which they had when introduced in 2014 it was as of a second. In 2015 it was half a second, and now there are three-tenths. They are losing that edge, but live that first year, which was fantastic. Is a moment of hope with the change of rules, everyone starts out a little from cero“.
Ferrari it will always be a chapter complex in the history of Fernando Alonso, with many moments to remember as much of himself as of his fans, as well as the various complicated situations he went through. Do not get the championship after so many efforts was a slab insurmountable for both parties. Interestingly, Alonso has a positive view of the current Ferrari in comparison with the general opinion, and considered to have more potential and level of what we have been able to exhibit in 2016:
“I Think I have been faster than it seems by results of, in some races were very close to Mercedes and something always came up in the output, or a mechanical problem or a puncture. In 2012 the opposite was true. We were not very fast, but everything was in the face. They (Red Bull) broke the engine, they had a penalty, problems in the pit stop, and we won races we shouldn’t have won, so we were also in a good mood. We fought until the last race. I’ve only been a year with Kimi, so I don’t have a direct comparison with the riders that are competing now”.
For this reason, the spaniard has not ruled out that Ferrari, eventually, get back on track and aspire to a title, on the basis of its history, and considers that there are always with them for their mindset towards the category, like the other great teams: “sometimes you win and sometimes you lose, but Ferrari will always be a contender, as McLaren-Honda, because they are two manufacturers that make (a lot) for racing and for Formula 1, and they are great companies, so you can expect that other teams have ups and downs. Force India does a great job a year, and another did not. But Ferrari, McLaren-Honda, Mercedes and Red Bull will always be contenders”.
And once you get it, or it is not the goal, what? Is the great unknown that surrounds an ever-Fernando Alonso has not been shy to flirt with other adventure racing, such as the 24 hours of Le Mans or the Indianapolis 500, at the same time that it criticized the loss of difficulty of piloting the cars of Formula 1 subsequent to 2008.
there is No doubt that its influence, and that of many other riders, is behind the philosophy of a new regulation that will bring cars quicker and more difficult on a physical level, that are to the liking of the spaniard. Still, Alonso believes that the people do too many readings of his statements, and argues that, in the short term, nothing is decided:
“Whenever I say something, when I talk openly about things and the problems that I see with my experience, has a large impact. Maybe the pilots who came two or three years ago they only know about this Formula 1, but I, I’ve been 16 years in Formula 1, I have driven many cars interesting, the top technology from Formula 1, the best laps timed. When I see all those truths, those facts, maybe some people don’t want to talk about, or have not experienced other Formulas 1. Automatically believe that I’m not enjoying it, or that I’m going to change the category. It will be some day, but who knows when will come that day. All that are racing is my life, Even when I go to my circuit in a kart, I compete. I think that this year things will improve, it will be more spectacular with a faster car, that is what it should be”.