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F1: The Alonso Conundrum: Past, Present and Future

Pranav Mathur
CONTRIBUTOR
Feature
310   //    22 Jun 2018, 11:26 IST

There is always a lot of buzz surrounding Fernando Alonso's future. The two-time world champion and the newly crowned Le Mans winner is according to many-one of the greatest drivers of the 21st century. Hence it's no surprise that the paddock and fans are always curious about his next moves.

AUTO-FRA-LEMANS-24H-ENDURANCE
Winner-Alonso at the 24H Le Mans

Let's start at the beginning. Alonso won two world championships with Renault in 2005 and 2006 but since then has seen a massive drought in the titles. His fallout with McLaren which was publicised widely in the media, resulted in him leaving the team after just one year. He then spent next two years at Renault followed by a five-year stint at Ferrari but didn't win any more championships. The next move was a gamble and it failed miserably as McLaren powered by Honda became a backmarker with poor straight-line speed and even worse reliability issues.

Despite all the controversial career choices, the reputation of Alonso has grown with each passing race. Be it his stunning qualifying performances or his mid-race exploits, he makes the mid-field battles worth watching for fans. The highlight of his 18-year long career is the way he has dominated his highly rated teammates, which included the likes of Jarno Trulli, Felipe Massa, Kimi Raikkonen and Jenson Button.

There are rumours (and rumours in F1 are mostly true) that the Spaniard is again looking for another opportunity. His recent win in Le Mans completed his second leg of the coveted 'Triple Crown'. He now needs to win Indy500 in order to equalise Graham Hill, who remains the only person to achieve triple crown till date. With McLaren also in advanced discussions to enter Indycar with a works team, it opens up another opportunity for Alonso.

Alonso has already tried his hand at Indy500 last year with Andretti and even led 27 laps of the race until his Honda engine blew. He definitely has got a feel of things in America, especially as Europeans like to call it- driving around in ovals. Hence a full Indy season with Andretti painted in McLaren colours is definitely not unthinkable.

Only Alonso knows where his future lies. With the kind of performances he is delivering for McLaren, he will be an asset for any team.

Should Fernando Alonso quit F1 and move to IndyCar? Have your say in the comments below.



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Pranav Mathur
CONTRIBUTOR
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