Alonso open to F1 return if "great opportunity" came up

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Alonso open to F1 return if "great opportunity" came up
By:
Mar 29, 2019, 3:53 PM

Fernando Alonso says he remains open to a Formula 1 return in 2020 if a "great opportunity" came up, but he insists his testing return with McLaren next week is not part of a push to come back.

The Spaniard will have his first taste of a 2019 F1 car next week when he joins McLaren for the post Bahrain GP Pirelli tyre test.

While his early return to F1 action has prompted talk that he could be lining up for a comeback, the two-time world champion has insisted that his plans for the future remain very open and he is not especially eager for it.

Asked by Motorsport.com if the test was about keeping himself sharp for a potential race return, Alonso said: "No. As I said last year, and in Barcelona [testing] as well, my idea is not to come back.

"When I said last year 'bye-bye' it was because I felt this chapter was already complete. I achieved a lot more in F1 than I dreamed of and I had great opportunities outside F1 to do something unprecedented. That's why I took the decision.

"So coming back is not in the plan. If something happened and a great opportunity arrives, I probably will consider. I don't close doors 100% to anything in the future."

Alonso said the Bahrain opportunity was his first real involvement with McLaren's F1 activities since a brief appearance at pre-season testing in Spain.

"I would lie if I told you I was involved in many things until now," he explained. "I've been only two days in Barcelona, one day Carlos was P1 the other day Lando was P1. So not bad at the moment!

"Now, let's see this first race. If we keep that average, probably I will have to come to many races."

Alonso's focus for now is on winning the Indy 500 in May, as well as clinching the World Endurance Championship for Toyota.

Beyond June though, Alonso is not committed to anything and he says he will wait until then before thinking about his longer term ambitions.

"I will have to think," he said. "There is time to think in the coming months. Right now I don't want to get too deep on that thinking, because the Indy 500 is going to take all my focus.

"But, for the future it depends what I will do after the summer: what projects are coming, where I will switch my focus.

"The WEC, obviously after winning Le Mans and winning Daytona at the beginning of the year and Sebring a couple of weeks ago, it's a question mark if I commit to that. It ends in 2020 in July, it's quite a future commitment. Maybe I have to think and be sure of that."

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Series Formula 1
Drivers Fernando Alonso Shop Now
Author Jonathan Noble
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