Photo: Frank Fife Agence France-Presse
The duration of the contract of Alonso, who had retired from F1 at the end of 2018 with the hope of return in a competitive position in the future, is not specified.
Jean-Louis Doublet – Agence France-Presse and
Raphaëlle Peltier – Agence France-Presse
Respectively to Spielberg and Paris
July 9, 2020
It is a duet history of the Formula 1 which was reformed : Fernando Alonso will make his return to the premier class in 2021, with Renault, the team with which the Spaniard has picked up world titles in 2005 and 2006.
The duration of the contract of Alonso, who had retired from F1 at the end of 2018 with the hope of return in a competitive position in the future, is not specified, but the driver and the team displayed in 2022 as a target to be back on the top.
To this date, the new regulations, commercial and financial — more particularly to the budgetary ceiling imposed at the stables — will be in place for a year and the new technical regulations will come into force.
“This will be a chance to have a championship that is more just and more equal “, hope Alonso, who had left in disgust not to have won a Grand Prix since 2013 due to lack of space in a ” top team “.
“I am very happy to be back in F1 and the team with which I have the best memories,” commented the one who has raced for Renault between 2003 and 2006 and then 2008 and 2009, during a virtual press conference on Wednesday.
At 39 years of age and after a break of two seasons, the Bull of the Asturias, considered one of the greatest drivers of his generation, may he return to his best level ?
“Culture of winning “
“Last year was very active for me. Between the world endurance Championship, the 24 hours of Daytona and the Indianapolis 500, I’ve been behind a steering wheel almost all the weeks, “he recalls, adding that the results of physical tests made recently have proven to be” the best of (his) career “.
Her future boss Cyril Abiteboul speaks of a ” decision natural, based on a mix of emotions, on the success of the past, but also a rational decision. “
“We have an ambition and clear expectations “, continues the team principal of Renault returned to F1 in 2016 with the goal to play in the long-term securities, but whose best ranking in the constructors is currently a fourth-place finish in 2018, far away from the behemoths Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull, the means still significantly higher up to the next season.
“We are pleased with the direction of the team, but also our sport, a more equitable, more human, more responsible and, most importantly, the performance of human at the centre “, he adds, to explain the recruitment of the double champion of the world, including the French hope it will be a ” boost for the staff.”
“The culture of winning and the persistence of Fernando will be useful to our team in training “, wants to believe Abiteboul, when the Spanish confirmed that the aim is to make Renault ” the team that can win championships “, with himself or another.
With the Australian Daniel Ricciardo leaving for McLaren at the end of the season, the team at diamond was looking for a driver with experience to support the French hope Esteban Ake, 23 years old.
“Great new “
Alonso has been linked by the rumour, with Red Bull and then Ferrari before you formalize with Renault, with whom he has won 17 victories between 2003 and 2008, and the drivers titles and constructors in 2005 and 2006.
For the native of Oviedo, this recruitment does not offer certainly not as much chance of immediate success, but the manufacturer announced in may that he would stay in F1 in the long term.
Known for his character easily offended, Alonso would have been able to win more than two titles. A year of tensions at McLaren in 2007 alongside Lewis Hamilton, and then five more frustrating at Ferrari (2010-2014), before a return inconclusive at McLaren (2015-2018), then in full decline, did not affect his reputation on the track.
Just like his wins at the 24 Hours of le Mans in 2018 and 2019, its first participation in the Indianapolis 500 in 2017 (abandonment as he played before) or to the Dakar-2020 (13th).
While the F1 world championship has just resumed, with more than three months late, and closed due to the pandemic of sars coronavirus, his return is a “great news” for the p.-d. g. of the F1 Chase Carey, the Spanish have always had, in addition to a ” great talent “, a media personality.
By then, Alonso has another dream to fulfill : to gird up the “Triple crown” of motor sports (F1 world Championship or Grand Prix of Monaco, 24 Hours of le Mans and Indy500). He must again take the start of the famous Indianapolis 500 at the end of August.