F1 should reflect on Alonso’s reason for leaving – Sainz

2018 F1 season

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Formula 1 should learn from the reasons which led Fernando Alonso to quit the sport, according to Carlos Sainz Jnr,

The Renault driver, who will replace Alonso at McLaren next year, said his departure shows F1 needs a more competitive grid.

“I think the fact he is leaving is a big loss for Formula 1,” said Sainz in today’s FIA press conference. “To not have one of the best drivers or the best drivers in motorsport at the moment in the grid is a big loss.

“So I think it is something for Formula 1 and to everyone to consider why one of the best drivers is leaving and why we cannot have a bit more competitive grid where many drivers can fight for wins or for podiums. I think it’s a thing to consider and something to think about for the future.”

Sainz called Alonso “the biggest influence” on him becoming an F1 driver.

“I followed Formula 1, I met him back in 2005, since then I really decided that I wanted to be a Formula 1 and gave it all to come here. To manage to compete against him the last four years have been a dream come true. Of course we will miss him.”

Max Verstappen also believes Alonso is leaving because of a lack of opportunities for him to win races.

“I think Fernando is a winner and he wants to win races,” he said. “He didn’t see that happening in the near future and of course he has tried already for a few years.

“I can understand why he leaves. Probably some new advantage where he probably can win again I think, that will motivate him very much and we’ll see in the future whether he comes back or not.”

Alonso’s former team mate and 2005 championship rival Kimi Raikkonen said they had “some good battles over the years.”

“It’s how it is unfortunately,” said Raikkonen. “We’re all going to stop at some point. There’s always new guys coming and us older ones has to go at some points. That’s how it goes and I’m sure he found some exciting racing for him and who know what happens in the future.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 20 comments on “F1 should reflect on Alonso’s reason for leaving – Sainz”

    1. why we cannot have a bit more competitive grid where many drivers can fight for wins or for podiums

      I think you’d need a good car to achieve that, Sainz. You’ll probably find out next year what I mean.

      1. What’s to find out? He never had a decent car in his F1 career. The best he ever got was this year’s Renault which is probably the 5th faster car.

    2. Maybe Alonso should reflect on mug no team wanted him.

      1. I agree, here’s a mug for that very purpose.

    3. *why no team wanted him.

      1. It was weird but we got it anyway. :)

    4. Alonso is leaving because no winning team would hire him because of his personality. He’s never had any loyalty to any team he’s driven for. He should look in the mirror, not blame F1.

    5. I mean, given how far the ‘top three’ teams are ahead of everyone else I can see why as unless you’re sitting in a Red Bull/Ferrari/Mercedes what chance do you have of winning a championship, or a race, or even getting a podium? Despite the jokes about Alonso annoying so many teams none will go near him and being mired in a determined to self-destruct McLaren there isn’t much point in hanging around when the best you can hope for on a normal day is 7th.

      1. But alonso says he declined red bull THIS year, why would he? If there was a team he could’ve joined that would’ve brought him back to winning races and with luck a title it was red bull!

    6. Perhaps the real reason why this man withdraws from formula 1 is because he is ashamed to have won a race (Singapore 2008) because his teammate deliberately crashed his car against the wall and not the one Sainz says.

      1. Go home, you’re drunk.

        1. Go home, you are violent…

      2. Surely would’ve done that in 2009 or so if that were the case!

    7. The lack of competition is a big issue… if Honda next year doesn’t deliver, we might have 3 classes in Formula 1. Ferrari and Mercedes, then Red Bull, and then the rest… Knowing all you can hope is finish 7th at best, unless someone ahead retires, it’s quite a bummer, to be honest… Not long ago even Force India had a go at a race win…

      1. The only unusual thing about this year’s “Class A – Class B” situation is the huge gulf in performance between the top and midfield teams, not the fact that the gulf exists. If you look at all other years since the 1990’s, you will find seasons in which 1-2 teams dominate are the norm, sometimes 3 teams. Midfield teams very rarely had the ability to go for race wins on performance alone. Even the example you mention was valid pretty much for only two races of a particularly strange season (Italy and Belgium 2009).

    8. F1 should reflect on why they let Alonso stay in the sport for so long. Rightly or wrongly his name has been associated with multiple controversies over the years. For someone who is apparently such a good driver it’s extremely weird that none of the competitive teams are chomping at the bit to get him into one of their cars.

      1. It doesn’t help when two top team principals make a pact not to sign him…

    9. How old is Sainz? Does he even follow his own sport?

      Nobody wants to be near Alonso’s toxicity, he’s down by his own hand and I’m guessing he’s finally reckoning he won’t get to drive anywhere better even if he’d do it for free (which, of course, he won’t, big money is his thing).

      The amazing thing is McLaren having him for so long, paying him so much.

      Great driver, yes, but what a loudmouth, bashing everyone at every opportunity (remember his Renault winning days?), Santandergate, Crashgate… Sore winner and even worse loser. Good riddance!

      1. You forgot spygate!

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