He is regarded by experts as the best Formula 1 driver on the grid, but at the age of 34, Fernando Alonso has only won two world championships. It’s been 8 years since he last won the world championship back in 2006. In a recent interview, Lewis Hamilton said, “Fernando is the most talented and fastest driver I’ve ever raced with, if he does not win the third world championship then it would a tragedy. He is one of the greatest of all time”.
So what went wrong?
Alonso, who moved to McLaren in 2007, was challenged by his then rookie teammate Hamilton. Both tied at the end of the season on points, and lost the world championship to Kimi Raikkonen. But the main talking point of the season was the drift between Fernando and Ron Dennis that resulted in Alonso leaving the team.
After two years in a non-competitive season with Renault, he moved to Ferrari in 2010. Many thought he would replicate Schumacher's success, which sadly never came to pass.
Alonso had five frustrating years with Ferrari and what was supposed to be the ideal marriage went on to a surprising divorce. He finished as a runner-up three times, missing out on the world championship twice: in 2010 due to strategical error and 2012 due to bad luck, both times in a less competitive car than Red Bull’s.
After 5 years, Fernando lost belief in Ferrari and moved to McLaren-Honda. But Ferrari are back to podium finishes whereas Mclaren-Honda are fighting to get into Q2. After the Malaysian GP Hamilton said, “ When I sat next to Sebastian I thought what must Fernando be thinking?”.
Sadly, the talent of Fernando Alonso only managed to win two world championship. Had he not left McLaren in 2008 or had he joined Red Bull in 2008, it appears he would definitely have won more than two world championships by now. It was perhaps a matter of bad choices made by him at those stages of his career.
We can only hope that McLaren-Honda gets competitive as soon as possible and Fernando fights for the championship in 2016 because he deserves it.