Fernando Alonso explained how much work is needed to prepare for the new generation of Formula 1 cars, weighing whether his stature as the oldest driver on the grid makes his job more difficult.
The two-time champion, who is scheduled for surgery this January after a cycling accident last year, has seen drastic changes to Formula 1 rules over nearly two decades in the sport. This season, with Alonso preparing for his second year with Alpine, there is another set of new cars and a new set of rules for the Spaniard to familiarize himself with.
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Asked before the winter break if he was anticipating a tough preparation regimen for the new cars, Alonso said: “Honestly, I don’t think it’s going to be any different. I think it will depend more on the performance of our cars and working on the simulator, working on the winter tests and finally after three or four races you are at the top of the car, at the top of the regulations, and after that it’s only the performance of the car that will dictate the results you get…
“So in terms of adaptation, I don’t think there is a big difference, it’s just hard work, or harder than any other winter, because we will have to spend a little more time in the simulator and together with the team. .”
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However, the Spaniard admitted that being the oldest driver on the grid means he will have to train differently from his younger teammates and perhaps work harder to keep his physical stature up to the task.
“Obviously I don’t train the same now that I’m 40 than I did when I was 23,” he said. “You have to train more, you have to stretch more, you have to have a different eating routine, do a lot of other things to be in the same shape, with the same strength, so I’m ready to do it.
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“There are more satisfying things to do but that is the plan for this winter: I want to be as strong as I can and I know I will have to train and I will have to do more than other drivers because yes, I am older. than them,” he explained.
Last season showed that Alonso had lost none of his trademark racing flair and his exceptional talent, the canny Asturian had overtaken Lewis Hamilton to secure team-mate Esteban Ocon a first win in Hungary, before returning to the podium in Qatar. As a result, there is a lot of anticipation about what Alpine and Alonso can achieve this year.