The Spaniard has justified his decision to leave Alpine to join Aston Martin next season.
F1 driver Fernando Alonso thinks he took « the right decisionleaving Alpine for Aston Martin from 2023, he explained on Thursday ahead of the Belgian Grand Prix this weekend.
« I felt it was the right decision to move to Aston, because they seemed to really want me and appreciate my performance over the past two years.Said the 41-year-old Spanish veteran, an Alpine driver since returning to F1 in early 2021.
« We didn’t agree on the essentials, (…) I always had a strange feeling“During contract negotiations with Alpine, chained the 2005 and 2006 world champion with Renault.
Alonso and Aston Martin announced their future collaboration in early August, to everyone’s surprise.
« It all started when Sebastian (Vettel) announced his retirement (end of July, editor’s note), said Alonso. Aston was waiting for his decision, they were happy with Seb, but he decided to quit. (…) We spoke and agreed very quickly and signed on Monday morning (August 1)« .
What was blocking at Alpine was « not just the duration » of contract (he wanted more than a year), detailed the native of Oviedo, « but also the confidence that one feels, the fact of feeling desired« .
If the Alpine team manager, Otmar Szafnauer, declared the day after the announcement to have learned it from the press, Alonso says on the other hand that he informed « President Luca de Meo (Renault), Laurent Rossi (CEO of Alpine), (his) mechanics, (his) team, everyone involved in the negotiations« .
His teammate, still until the end of the season, Esteban Ocon, said to himself « sad to see Fernando go« .
« We were building something great, it was going in the right direction“continued the Frenchman.
« But I’m sure the team will find a driver next door who will still help us to improve this car.“, he concluded, personally desiring the German Mick Schumacher (Haas): “he’s a good friend, but it’s up to the team to decide« .
Alpine had announced, the day after the official departure of Alonso, that its reserve driver Oscar Piastri would be his replacement. But the 21-year-old Australian immediately denied this and should, according to the specialist press, drive for McLaren next year.