Fernando Alonso’s career path has been called into question since his return to McLaren, however, once again his manager, the Italian businessman Flavio Briatore (banned for fixing the Singapore Grand Prix whilst chief of Renault F1) has stirred the hornet’s nest once more with his latest promotional statement:
‘Don’t exclude a Ferrari return for Alonso’
Alonso, it has been reported (F1.co.uk) has publicly stated that he expects there to be “a lot of changes” in the Formula 1 driver market across the coming months, and he will “stay calm” when making his decision.
“But I want to go to a safe project, not a risky one. I would like to be in a place I can be competitive from day one and win.”
Perhaps giving his strongest hint yet that his final choice will be an “all or nothing” leap.
“After 16 years, with everything I have achieved, I would like to be competitive in my last years in formula one,”
We are closing up to the F1 summer break, which is his self proclaimed “line in the sand ” deadline for McLaren to give him a winning car or for him to “choose” where he goes for 2018. Interestingly Ferdy bothered to made a statement after this years Baku GP that if it wasn’t for the engine, McLaren would have won the race by hovering up the crumbs left by all the chaos. Could have been an awkward situation as technically McLaren would have met his demands of delivering a winning car in order to stick around, it was not to be, he was however was able to score McLaren’s first points of 2017.
One thing is for sure, there is movements. Briatore, showboating making sure he has been seen talking to influential people well timed releases that state “Alonso feels he is at the peak of his powers thanks to his added experience and expertise”
Even ex-Formula 1 driver Mark Webber says it is an “absolute travesty” that Fernando Alonso is enduring a third successive season in an uncompetitive car. Interestingly also previously managed by Briatore.
It would also seem that as fast as the media machine creates hype it is counteracted.
Toto Wolff has denied discussing the possibility of Alonso moving to Mercedes despite having dinner with Falv in Baku and Red Bull’s Horner has ruled out either of his drivers leaving the team at the end of the year.
Ferrari’s Arrivebene are the only team to say (early June) they are not interested in dealing with contracts yet, apparently they are “distracting” to the drivers…
On the other hand Eric Boullier has confirmed that Carlos Sainz is “an option” for McLaren should Fernando Alonso opt to leave the team, and we have been seeing much more from him lately. McLaren have stated they wish to keep the Spaniard, insisting there is no tension between Alonso and McLaren.
Fernando however, has been a good sport. A good team man. Positive, where others would be damming and always stating his loyalty and commitment (if not with Honda) to the team.
Lets see what Flav has up his sleeve in the next few weeks, I do wonder however what influence the Italian had on Fernando’s choice to turned down the offer of a Brawn GP seat for 2009!
Fernando has played it all perfectly this year, he has given no team a reason to hate him, his profile has been boosted into the stratosphere and the world is just willing him on to win one more title.
Question is where? Ferrari and his media hype, or Renault, back to old friends?