Alonso reveals motivation behind extended F1 deal

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Fernando Alonso has explained his decision to continue racing in Formula 1 beyond the 2024 season.

The Spaniard confirmed on Thursday evening that he had signed a multi-year extension with the Silverstone-based squad, taking him into the 2026 season and the new era of technical regulations.

Alonso has been pondering his F1 future for some time and opted to commit his future to Aston Martin, despite opportunities opening elsewhere on the grid.

“It didn’t change much from when we spoke in February at the car launch,” Alonso told media including RacingNews365.

“I needed a few races or a few weeks to really think about myself, if I was ready to commit for more years in F1 because the calendars are just a little bit more intense now, the cars as well, and the commitment.

“My love for F1 and my love for Aston Martin didn’t change but I just wanted this time to really speak with myself and make the decision and the commitment.

“Obviously F1 takes all your time, all your energy. You have to give up basically everything in life to keep racing and I wanted just to speak with myself if I was ready to do so.”

The decision

Alonso revealed that he made his decision to remain in F1 after the Australian Grand Prix last month, which then prompted immediate talks with Aston Martin.

“It was not too difficult,” he outlined. “I think we both wanted the same, I wanted to keep racing with Aston Martin and they wanted to keep me in the seat.

“So when two parties want something, at one point you reach an agreement. I’m excited to keep racing with this team at which I feel at home.

“It was also a sense of loyalty that I wanted to express to my team. One and a half years ago we started together and we achieved so many things, some of them probably unprecedented in F1 – to reach so many highs in such a short period of time.

“I felt this was just the beginning of the journey. It could not be the end of the journey for me and Aston Martin.”

			© XPBimages
© XPBimages

No retirement timeline

Alonso will turn 43 years of age later this year, meaning he will be 45 at the end of the 2026 campaign and become the first driver to race in F1 at the age of 45 or older since the early 1970s.

When asked if there’s scope for him to race into 2027 and beyond, Alonso replied: “It’s difficult to really comment on it because I can’t predict when I will stop racing or when I will retire from racing.

“For sure it’s not going to happen in 2025 or 2026 because one of the motivations was to enter the new regulations and to work with Honda. Let’s put it like that – at least two more years.

“I will not go into the specifics of how many years but is a lot of years to come with Aston Martin and to make some progress in other areas.

“When I’m racing, I will do my best to win with this team and to be competitive.

“But I will feel the same if we can achieve some great things and success even when I’m not driving and I can support the team to achieve great things even in a different role.”

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