Fernando Alonso, Toyota Hilux Dakar test, 2019

Alonso impressed by “amazing” first run in Dakar Toyota


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Fernando Alonso says he was surprised how quickly he felt comfortable during his first run in Toyota’s Dakar-winning Hilux.

The two-times world champion, who has previously played down the possibility of competing in rallies, tested the machine in South Africa today.

“It felt OK actually,” said Alonso after his first run. “We built the speed a little bit, slowly, lap after lap, getting more confident.

“Obviously still especially the bumps, [it’s] difficult to read how high they are and how much speed you can carry. But the car feels great, very good grip, food balance, good power and braking as well. Everything feels amazing so I’m really happy.”

Alonso was testing the car Nassar Al-Attiyah drove to victory in this year’s Dakar rally, held in January. He said he felt more comfortable in the car than he expected to despite the heat.

“Everyone was telling me how hot it was inside and I felt OK with the temperatures. I felt more comfortable than what I thought, probably.”

Alonso’s next race appearance will be in the Six Hours of Spa at the beginning of May. At the end of the month he will return to the Indianapolis 500 as he bids to become the second driver in motorsport history to win the ‘Triple Crown’.

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Pictures: Fernando Alonso tests Toyota Hilux Dakar

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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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  • 26 comments on “Alonso impressed by “amazing” first run in Dakar Toyota”

    1. No caption for Ganiel de Villiers even though he’s in the drivers seat in those 2 pictures…

    2. Good to know they had a “food balance” there! Good nutrition is really important in endurance events! :)

      1. Yep, you can get peckish on those long gruelling runs ;-)

        1. Haha, well said!

      2. Alonso loves chickens afterall…


    3. Baja 1000 must be next, then…

    4. Arguably the best Rally driver in history up to this day, Sebastian Loeb, couldn’t win Dakar in all his attempts.
      And here comes some arrogant rookie with 0km experience in a rally car and conquers it (Dakar)?

      It will just not happen.

      I always hated Alonso’s arrogance, but if he really pretends to be “the best” at Dakar and will indeed enter the race, it will be the last thing I ever read about this guy.

      BTW, the only way for Alonso to “win” Dakar is for Al-Attiyah to pose and drive for Alonso instead.

      1. Where did Alonso say that he was intends to conquer the Dakar Rally? He didn’t say anything like that.

        I really miss the days when drivers competed in many different series: sometimes from week to week or even on the same day. Personally, I think that Alonso competing in other race series (i.e Indy 500, WEC) is a great development for racing in general. Hopefully, it will inspire other drivers to do the same.

        1. Thanks God we didn’t hear him saying this about Dakar… yet.
          But of you read his interviews from the last 2-3 years, you will get lost with the number of times he mentioned how he is the best and how he wants to prove everyone that he is the best, and how he wants to do something unprecedented, and how he must have opportunities to win… then maybe you will get an idea, that if he decides to try Dakar, it will not be “just to have some fun”.

          And if he indeed enters Dakar, his first words will be: “I am here to win”.

          I don’t care about what he does in his spare time, but I can’t stand his arrogance. And his participation in Dakar
          (if it happens) willl be the last nail in the coffin of my already distant interest about some ex-F1 driver called Alonso.

          1. @dallein And what exactly would be wrong with him taking a shot at it? It may or may not work out for him, but so what? In another generation, Jacky Ickx tried his hand at lot of different races, and was successful…including at Dakar and Bathurst, for example. I am not aware of anyone thinking any less of him because of that.

          2. Arrogance is just a petty synonym for self-belief. That someone else’s self-belief offends you says more about your poor character than theirs.

          3. (if it happens) willl be the last nail in the coffin of my already distant interest about some ex-F1 driver called Alonso.

            I’m sure Fernando Alonso would be absolutely devastated.

        1. And the next thing he does is preparing for Dakar…

          1. He hasn’t said so. For all we know, this test is just a PR exercise.

            1. We’ll see.

      2. Your arrogance seems far more of an issue …except that Alonso has achieved amazing things while you’ve done what exactly?

        There are so many holes in your comment that it’s not worth even trying to correct you.
        Easier to just laugh at you.

        1. Couldn’t have said it better:)

        2. Agreed

      3. By the sounds of it, you have a good dose of arrogance yourself..

        1. Overdose is the right word.

      4. @dallein

        I don’t see what’s arrogant about anything in the article. You’ve got issues dude..

    5. Non sequitur

      Arrogance is pride and conceit. Not self belief.

      Its possible to be humble and have self belief. In fact, it takes loads more character.

    6. I thought this is F1 only

    Comments are closed.