(Motorsport-Total.com) – Fernando Alonso will return to Formula 1 in 2021 at the proud 39 years of age. The sometimes much younger competition does not scare the Spaniard. After all, he has never lacked in self-confidence: “If people think that I am the most complete driver, I have to agree,” he says with conviction.
“I see myself as pretty complete. I think I have a 9 in everything (out of 10; editor’s note). Maybe there is a faster driver on a day in the rain, maybe there is a faster driver on Saturdays. There is certainly still a driver who does better. But there isn’t much else. “
Alonso classifies himself as “close to the top” in many categories and under many circumstances and draws the comparison to cycling: “If a cyclist has 9.5 in the mountains, 9.5 in the time trial and 9.5 in the sprint, he takes he’s wearing all three jerseys. “
“Positively surprised” by Dakar, Indy, Le Mans
Of course, his many years of experience also help him: “When they drove with V10 engines, we were there. When they were V12 engines, we were there, just as they were with Michelin, Bridgestone, Pirelli. When qualifying was only one lap we were there, even when it lasted an hour. “
There are also Alonso’s appearances in other racing series, such as the Dakar Rally 2020. “To finish in the top five there at any time was a positive surprise for me,” he recalls. “Debuting in an endurance car and setting my colleagues’ times in this category was a surprise to me.”
And taking part in the Indy 500 as well and “being able to take the lead in my 2017 Oval debut was a positive experience,” says the 39-year-old, recounting his starts outside of Formula 1. “You discover yourself, you see that you are a driver that adapts to any situation, car or category. “
“A fighter”: He’s still far from having enough
“You use that to your own advantage,” says Alonso, “although you know your limits and try to hide them so that your rivals don’t see them.” Nevertheless, his recent adventures would have shown him what he could still give.
“I’m a fighter, I don’t take anything for granted. Now I could be at home and watch the races on TV, or drive once a year just for fun. But I like to try again, never give up, fight continue “, he explains his motivation to face the competition again.
It’s similar in a race: “When I’m sixth and ten laps still ahead of me, my head always thinks that a podium is possible. I can’t turn off the switch in myself, I can’t be satisfied with less, I want to always a little more. I’m ambitious, “says Alonso.
Alonso: “I’m the weirdo in my family”
However, he cannot really explain where this irrepressible ambition comes from: “I have often thought about it,” he admits. “My parents are very calm, not very competitive. My sister, my best friends are also very relaxed people.”
“Nobody has inherited this competitive character or set an example for me. I’m the nutcase in my family. My life consists only of competition, whatever I do. With my friends, at home, even in the supermarket, where I quickly get the milk in front of someone else hole. It’s like a game in my life. “