When Fernando Alonso and Charles Leclerc Nearly Became Teammates at Ferrari
|Published March 13, 2023
When Fernando Alonso joined Ferrari in 2010, expectations were very high for the Spaniard. He was joining a team that was desperate to win a world championship because of its huge name, and Alonso seemed like the right fit. Unfortunately, in his five years with the Scuderia, a title win never materialized.
Alonso came very close to winning the championship in 2010 and 2012, but there were mistakes made in the Ferrari camp that ultimately halted his charge. This was frustrating for a driver who had his eyes set on his third title, and it prompted him to switch teams at the end of the 2014 season.
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However, talking to Radio Barcelona, Alonso revealed that he nearly stayed behind at Ferrari. When his contract with running out, the Maranello-based outfit offered the former Renault driver a contract that lasted until the 2019 season. He did not accept it because, at the moment, he liked McLaren’s project and offer more. History could’ve been very different if the Oviedo-born driver accepted Ferrari’s renewal offer.
Alonso could have been teammates with the fan favorite, Charles Leclerc.
Also read: “I’m Sick of People Fueling Black-White Problem”: Former Ferrari Driver Once Denounced Lewis Hamilton Promoting Racial Equality
McLaren stint was a nightmare for Fernando Alonso
Alonso is one of the greatest F1 drivers of all time and is used to competing at the front of the grid. At Ferrari, he didn’t win the title but was in regular contention for a race win. Looking back on his move to McLaren today, its easy to say that Alonso made a mistake but at the moment, it was difficult to comprehend how horrific his stint was going to be.
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McLaren did not have the pace to break into the front of the grid. Their poor pace and engine reliability also meant that there were times when Alonso struggled to break into the points, even. Despite these problems, Alonso drove for the Woking-based outfit until 2018 after which he decided to take a two-year hiatus from Formula 1.
Also read: Explained: Why Lewis Hamilton’s 2011 Season With McLaren Worse Than His Winless Season in 2022?
Alonso hopeful of success with Aston Martin
Alonso returned to the F1 grid in 2021 with Alpine but in spite of his old age, was adamant that he wanted a title winning car. Unfortunately, Alpine did not have the right mechanical package for him, which made him take the decision of joining Aston Martin.
People were skeptical about Alonso’s move again, but this time, it has paid off (at least till now). In the opening race in Bahrain, the Silverstone-based squad had the second fastest car in terms of pace, and the Spanish driver earned his 99th career podium with a P3 finish behind the Red Bulls.
Alonso, however, is not satisfied with just a podium as he aims to achieve bigger things with a team, that is obsessed achieving success in the very near future.
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