Aug 23, 2018
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Fernando Alonso: Purple Bull deny Spanish driver

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Fernando Alonso: Purple Bull deny Spanish driver

Fernando Alonso (proper) is ninth within the drivers’ championship with Daniel Ricciardo fifth

Purple Bull have denied a declare by Fernando Alonso that he was twice supplied a drive with them subsequent season earlier than he determined to retire from Formulation 1 on the finish of this yr.

The 37-year-old stated Purple Bull supplied him the seat being vacated by Daniel Ricciardo, who’s becoming a member of Renault.

“F1 will not be giving me the challenges I am in search of. It was not the case for me to affix this journey,” stated Alonso.

However the Austrian crew stated Alonso was by no means made a proposal.

Earlier this week, Purple Bull motorsport boss Helmut Marko stated Alonso “would not match with us”.

Marko, who has not but arrived on the Belgian Grand Prix, added to Purple Bull’s Servus TV station: “We had been negotiating with him in 2007 or 2008. His calls for had been very tedious again then.

“When you take a look at his historical past, in McLaren and Ferrari, it was all the time a one-man present.”

Alonso is taking a look at different classes of motorsport as he seeks to finish the unofficial ‘triple crown’.

That is broadly regarded to be victories within the Monaco Grand Prix, the Le Mans 24 Hours and the Indy 500, though some say the F1 world title fairly than Monaco. Both means, solely Graham Hill has ever achieved the feat.

Alonso added victory within the Le Mans 24 Hours this yr with Toyota, for whom he’s main the World Endurance Championship this season along with his F1 commitments with McLaren, and led 27 of the 200 laps on a one-off try on the Indy 500 final yr earlier than retiring within the closing phases with engine failure.

Alonso didn’t affirm he would race in IndyCar subsequent yr, however stated: “The triple crown is one thing I’ve been saying for a few years now.

“To be the perfect driver on the planet there are two potentialities: successful eight world championships – fairly unlikely now for me – and the second is to style totally different sequence and totally different automobiles.

“In sports activities automobiles I’m doing OK. On the Indy 500, I felt aggressive final yr and there are different sequence that may put you in a special degree in motorsport.”

Alonso stated he didn’t count on to return to F1.

“Proper now, I’m considering it’s goodbye,” he stated. “Life modifications in a short time. I haven’t got a crystal ball to know what’s going to occur. For me, it’s bye-bye, however who is aware of sooner or later?”

However he stated he might need stayed in F1 had he had a successful automotive.

“The chances for subsequent yr, there have been few, or so much – relies on the way you take a look at it,” Alonso added. “I didn’t keep as a result of there are solely two groups that may win and so they proceed with their drivers for the next years.

“And the F1 we see now’s the not the F1 I dreamed of after I was a child or after I began in 2001.

“Whenever you come to the identical place for thus a few years and repeat the identical factor, it’s simpler to be not so emotional concerning the challenges and that’s the reason now.”

The second Ferrari seat alongside Sebastian Vettel is the one place on the high two groups that has not been introduced at this stage however Alonso’s remarks appear to verify the growing impression in F1 that Kimi Raikkonen can be retained.

Ferrari had been planning earlier than the sudden loss of life of former president Sergio Marchionne final month to advertise Monegasque Charles Leclerc from Sauber, however the brand new administration is alleged to have had a rethink.

Tribute from Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso had been each at McLaren in 2007 and each completed on 109 factors, one lower than world champion Kimi Raikkonen

Lewis Hamilton paid tribute to Alonso as “top-of-the-line drivers ever” in Formulation 1, following the Spaniard’s determination to retire.

Alonso, twice a world champion and sixth within the all-time win listing with 32 victories, introduced final week that he would depart Formulation 1 on the finish of the season.

Hamilton stated forward of this weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix: “It’s a disgrace he’s not as adorned as his capacity [deserves].

“However sport is not only about being driver, it is the way you play the sport, the way you place your self.”

Alonso has famously made a sequence of poor profession selections, together with turning down an opportunity to affix Purple Bull in time for his or her domination of the early 2010s, and leaving Ferrari on the finish of 2014 believing they’d by no means produce a aggressive automotive.

Hamilton, who was Alonso’s team-mate at McLaren in 2007 once they tied on factors and variety of wins, added: “He has been arguably the perfect driver I’ve ever pushed towards and I want him all the perfect.”

Why Ricciardo went to Renault

Pierre Gasly (left) will race for Purple Bull in 2019 with Daniel Ricciardo becoming a member of Renault

Alonso’s determination was one in every of a sequence of driver strikes introduced over the summer season break, which ends with the Belgian Grand Prix this weekend.

The opposite large information was Daniel Ricciardo’s determination to depart Purple Bull on the finish of the season and be a part of Renault.

He stated: “It was certainly not a straightforward determination. It bought to a degree after I felt I used to be prepared for a change and a brand new problem, just a few recent motivation.

“It sounds straightforward saying it like that nevertheless it wasn’t straightforward. There have been a number of sleepless nights however as soon as I made the choice I really feel snug with it.”

Ricciardo admitted that Renault, who’re fourth this season after 12 races however a great distance off Purple Bull’s tempo, wouldn’t be able to win subsequent yr however stated he was assured of their capacity to take action sooner or later.

“Their brief to medium-term plan is encouraging,” the Australian stated. “What they’re doing with their funds and the best way they’re doing it confirmed me they wish to win.

“I noticed some actually good indicators with what they confirmed me of their presentation, and likewise their honesty – not telling me they will win in Melbourne [the first race next year]. It’s a course of however one going ahead fairly quickly.”

observe on BBC Sport

BBC Sport has dwell protection of all of the season’s races on BBC Radio 5 dwell and BBC Radio 5 dwell sports activities additional, plus dwell on-line commentary on the BBC Sport web site and cellular app – together with viewers interplay, skilled evaluation, debate, voting, options, interviews and video content material.

All instances BST and are topic to alter at brief discover.

Belgian Grand Prix protection particulars
Date Session Time Radio protection On-line textual content commentary
Thursday, 23 August Preview & podcast 20:00-21:00 BBC Radio 5 dwell
Friday, 24 August First observe 09:55-11:35 BBC Radio 5 dwell sports activities additional From 09:30
Second observe 13:55-15:35 BBC Sport on-line From 13:30
Saturday, 25 August Third observe 10:55-12:05 BBC Radio 5 dwell sports activities additional From 10:30 (steady)
Qualifying 13:55-15:05 BBC Sport on-line
Podcast 5 dwell on-line
Sunday, 26 August Race 14:10-16:00 BBC Radio 5 dwell From 12:30
Assessment podcast 5 dwell on-line

BBC Sport – Formula 1

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