Fernando Alonso, the two-time F1 World Champion and current McLaren driver, doesn’t seem too happy about the current state of Formula 1. Autosprint, an Italian auto racing magazine, was able to get Alonso’s opinion on the current V6 turbocharged hybrid cars, the current Pirelli tires used in F1, and whether he’ll be sticking around after his contract’s up.
In the interview, Alonso told Autosprint, “I’m not at all happy for some things that are happening: we can never drive the cars to their real limit; we can never attack as much as we would like because the tires don’t allow you to… To be quick in today’s F1, you must not attack too much, that’s the secret, but that’s something against a driver’s instincts.”
Clearly, this kind of racing isn’t why Alonso got into the sport.
The toll on the driver is also much less in today’s cars, as Alonso explains: “Before, after 10 laps you had to have a two-hour massage, while now you can drive 150 laps and barely sweat by the end.”
Alonso doesn’t have to stick around too long if he doesn’t want to. There’s only one year left in his contract with McLaren, and there are several paths to follow should he choose to leave.
“Le Mans would be the option closest to my driving style, and to what I’ve always done.”
He hasn’t dismissed the notion of driving in an Indy car either: “The Indy 500 is a fascinating, radical change because you must learn a completely different driving style and way of thinking.”
Alonso tells Autosprint he considers the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Indianapolis 500 the only other victories equivalent to an F1 championship in terms of prestige, which is why he has so much interest in them.
If racing in Formula 1 isn’t fun for the 34 year-old driver anymore, there’s no reason why he should stay in the series. Like Mark Webber before him, Alonso could end up as a factory driver in Le Mans, which should satisfy his need to drive. We certainly don’t see a problem with that.