Aston Martin’s next move: Will Alonso say bye-bye to F1?

Fernando Alonso’s career path is steering him towards renewing his contract with Aston Martin, yet he remains non-committal even about his presence in Formula 1 post-2024.

The racing community had been abuzz with speculation about Alonso possibly joining either Red Bull or Mercedes in 2025. Nonetheless, Max Verstappen’s commentary from Suzuka highlighted the oddity of having a 43-year-old as a teammate, a sentiment echoed by Dr Helmut Marko, who remarked, “I don’t know why, but they don’t belong together at Red Bull.”

In a twist, Mercedes has opted to extend Kimi Antonelli’s detailed testing schedule for 2024, diminishing the likelihood of acquiring a seasoned driver with a significant track record.

Alonso, after outperforming the Mercedes team at Suzuka, expressed his disinterest in joining them, stating, “Mercedes is behind us, so this option doesn’t seem attractive to me.” The feeling of trailing the race leader by “44 seconds” also did little to appeal to the two-time champion.

When quizzed about whether his performance on Sunday would influence his decision for 2025, Alonso’s ambiguous “Yes and no” left much to the imagination. Despite enjoying the race, he reflected on the weekend as one of his career’s highlights, yet the 44-second gap to the leader dimmed his enthusiasm, saying, “Today I had fun, which is important to feel when racing. But I had one of the best weekends of my entire career and was still 44 seconds behind the leader. That’s not so much fun.”

Alonso’s reflections on his performance at Suzuka in 2024 conveyed a sense of futility, acknowledging that his efforts would largely go unnoticed. He lamented, “No one will ever remember Suzuka 2024 for what I did. Red Bull and Ferrari are in another league and McLaren and Mercedes are ahead of us, so our natural position is ninth and tenth in each qualifying and in each race.”

This sentiment hints at a possible pivot back to retirement if Aston Martin fails to accelerate its progress. “Let’s see,” he added, leaving his future open-ended.

Aston Martin’s team principal, Mike Krack, shared his optimism with DAZN, believing in the team’s potential for improvement and Alonso’s pivotal role, stating, “For sure Fernando is the first one who wants to do better, we know that. So I think we will do better. I think we have one of the best drivers in history.”

GMM

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