Late last week it was announced that Kimi Raikkonen would be staying at Ferrari through 2010, which news put paid to the end of Fernando Alonso’s dream of moving to Italy at the end of 2009. However, despite the Spaniard feeling the blow from the Scuderia, Alonso did say he was expecting it and reminded reporters that he is still young and the chance for driving for Ferrari has not been totally lost.
The closing of Maranello’s doors also squeezes Alonso into a tighter corner with regards to his options for 2009 and 2010. Currently at Renault and struggling to even get into the points on a consistent basis, Alonso would want a decent car next year that can better challenge for podiums and wins. However, the double champion is still hopeful that his team can produce the goods and see a return to the good old days.
I haven’t seen much [of the 2009 car], because we are focused on the remaining races, but I’m sure it inspires confidence because at this point of the year every team is nearly completely sure that next year they will do well. They are all very optimistic and it’s up to you to believe them or not. Normally I believe [Renault], because they’ve given me a lot of joy and two cars to win titles with, so it’s easier to believe them than others. Fernando Alonso.
It is perhaps because of the history and the knowledge of the team that Fernando believes the Enstone-based squad is his best option for next year, despite rumoured to have received offers from BMW and Honda. The Swiss-German outfit have publicly stated that they hare happy to wait for Alonso’s decision before confirming their line up for next season, suggesting that they would rather have the Spaniard in their car rather than either Nick Heidfeld or Robert Kubica. And given his recent performances, I’d suggest it is Heidfeld who is under the most pressure.
Honda as well would welcome someone of Alonso’s calibre in the team, and partnered with the hopeful upturn in pace and the full force of Ross Brawn being realised, it could see the Japanese squad taking a large step forward. However, despite the team saying they are concentrating on the RA109, you cannot help but worry for their immediate future and results. Perhaps, given the potential clashes with the very-fast Kubica and the concern over Honda’s performance, Renault might just be the best place for Alonso for the next few years.
As I always say, Renault is my first option because I know the people and I know things can be done right here, even though this year things haven’t gone well. And if not, we’ll see what we can do. I’m 27 now and life changes a lot and if I race in Formula One for another eight or ten years I might get the chance again to end up there [at Ferrari]. Fernando Alonso.
Either way, it seems as though the young champion is not in any particular hurry to make a decision and will no doubt spend considerable time weighing up his options. Don’t hold your breath just yet!
Its hard to know which way to go with this one.
I think Fernando in a Ferrari would be just about unbeatable, and the scraps with Lewis would be something to see alright. But since I hate Ferrari and love Fernando I’m happy not to be in that awkward position yet of having to barrack for a team I hate !
I still like the BMW-Sauber option. Go towards the white Fernando !
German white or Japanese white? 🙂
I have to admit, right now, I want Alonso in the BMW as well. The battles with Kubica would be monumental. And if BMW can continue their progress (as they have done since the bought Sauber), the battles with Kimi and Lewis would be extraordinary. But…
…I rate Heidfeld, I think he’s a decent chap, and I think he deserves the ride as well and I wouldn’t want his career to wither and die.
Gah, F1 has too much talent, believe it or not! Or, to put it another way, not enough top-end teams to accommodate the talent.
Something on my mind…
What are the team principals attitudes towards pairing up (and I’ll use this term controversially) two “number one” driversthese days? After turbulent partnerships like Mansell and Piquet, Prost and Senna, and more recently Alonso and Hamilton…it makes me wonder what team boss would have the stomach for such an arrangement.
I’m not suggesting that the other drivers I haven’t mentioned are any lesser in quality or aren’t first-class, championship winning material, but if Alonso does pair up with Kubica or Raikkonen/Massa in either teams, if I was a team boss I would shiver at the thought of what might happen particularly after last season, race performance aside. I don’t think Ron Dennis lost so much sleep in a season last year since 1989.
There are also comments flying around that every team boss should treat Alonso as a disease in light of the espionage debacle before considering hiring him. Though you can’t argue with that logic, I’ve found that a bit unfair considering we haven’t heard his side of things and I suspect we’ll never know the truth for quite some time.
As a spectator though, I’d love to see Alonso on the front grid again as well as some of the driver-eat-driver drama we saw in the 1980s. I like controversy…
The decision to renew the contract of a driver who’s costing Ferrari a lot of money, yet performing very poorly, sends out a message that Alonso stands very little chance of securing a seat with the team, at least whilst the current management structure is in place.
It’s interesting that Alonso talks in terms of his career over the next decade, which suggests that he accepts there’s little prospect of him heading to Maranello in the immediate future.
“…I have to admit, right now, I want Alonso in the BMW as well. The battles with Kubica would be monumental…”
Interesting thought, I agree, Oliver. As Steven always point here, they are very similar in their driving styles and would make BMW goes at its limit.
But Antonio Lobato, the official “pundit” of TELECINCO in Spain, and Alonso´s friend, has guaranteed, 99.9999 per cent in his BLOG, that BMW will not be the Fernando´s place in 2009., Lobato was right about Fernando´s move to Mclaren. He predicted as well that Fernando would not finish his contract at Mclaren. I would give him some credit…
I keep changing my mind on what would be best for him. I am certain it is not Honda. The future rise of Honda is fantasy. It will not happen.
BMW’s car would suit him but I can’t see him getting on with Mario Theissen and there is the Kubica problem. That has fireworks written all over it.
In the end I think he will stay at Renault. I think if it hasn’t happened yet he will grow to rue not making things work at McLaren. Regardless of all the real or perceived problems he came within a point of winning a third consecutive championship and would clearly be challenging this season too. He is way too good a driver to be wasting his time at Renault or Honda but I think last year’s move has restricted his future options.
Easy…Firstly, put the self confessed best driver in F1 (Hamilton) in a STR,to see if he can live with Vettel,instead of the hand picked No.2 in Kovi,(who couldnt win a raffle), then put Alonso back in a Mclaren!!! problem solved!!! maybe then we can enjoy F1 again 🙂