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Alpine F1 team confirms Fernando Alonso for 2022 season

FILE - Alpine's Fernando Alonso in action during practice ahead of the Hungarian GP. Photo: Florion Goga/AFP

FILE - Alpine's Fernando Alonso in action during practice ahead of the Hungarian GP. Photo: Florion Goga/AFP

Published Aug 26, 2021


Double Formula One world champion Fernando Alonso will remain at the Alpine F1 team for a second season in 2022, the team said on Thursday.

The 40-year-old Spaniard, who had teased a "big announcement" in a coded message on Twitter on Wednesday, will continue to race alongside Frenchman Esteban Ocon who was handed a fresh three-year deal by the Renault-owned team earlier this season.

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"I’m very happy to confirm the contract extension with Alpine F1 Team into 2022," Alonso, who won both his championships with the Enstone-based team when it raced as Renault in 2005 and 2006, said in a statement ahead of this weekend's Belgian Grand Prix.

"I felt at home the moment I returned to this team and have been welcomed back with open arms."

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Alonso, winner of 32 races, made his Formula One comeback this year after two seasons out during which he competed in the World Endurance Championship and the Dakar rally.

He played a pivotal role in securing team mate Ocon's maiden win at the last race in Hungary by holding up the charging Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton. His fourth-place finish in that race was his best result of the season.

The Spaniard is currently 11th in the overall standings with 38 points.

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"Fernando has impressed us all since he returned to the sport at the beginning of this year," said Alpine CEO Laurent Rossi.

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"His performance in Hungary was another example of his racing pedigree and reminded everyone how skilled a driver he is."

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Alonso's contract extension was widely expected.

Alpine who are now fifth in the overall standings are looking to next year, when a major rules overhaul aimed at encouraging closer racing and a more restrictive budget cap could level the playing field, as an opportunity to move up the field.

Alonso is hoping to lead their charge.

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"It’s been a tricky season for everyone, but we’ve shown progress as a team and the result in Hungary serves as a good example of this progression," said Alonso.

"I have been a big supporter of the need for a level playing field and change in the sport and the 2022 season will be a great opportunity for that."


Related Topics:

Formula 1