Alpine racing director Davide Brivio has said he has no doubt about Fernando Alonso’s motivation to compete in the pinnacle of motorsport, and he can already see the positive effect his presence is having on the team.
Alonso, who retired from F1 at the end of 2018 off the back of a frustrating final few seasons with McLaren, is returning to the sport with the team he won both of his World Championships with, though they now have a different moniker.
“[Fernando] is really pushing and I think it’s very positive for the team to have this type of driver that tends to stimulate everybody, push everybody to give the maximum,” Brivio said.
“The fact he’s coming back in the most demanding class of motorsports, it shows also how strongly he is motivated to be back in action and to do great.”
Earlier this month, Brivio said he believes Esteban Ocon will have an advantage over Alonso this season, as he is already integrated within the team.
However, Brivio nevertheless believes the young Frenchman can benefit from the two-time World Champion’s experience.
“I think it’s a great combination where Fernando will be important also for Esteban, in order to show also how it can work maybe in a different way with an experienced driver,” he added.
“At the same time, Esteban can help Fernando because he’s becoming more and more competitive and I think it would be very competitive this year, so I like this combination and I’m really looking forward to seeing both in action.”
After winning back-to-back Championships with the Renault works team in 2005 and 2006, Alonso switched teams four times (not counting his latest move to Alpine) as he tried to get his hands on a car that he could drive to a third title.
Alpine aren’t expected to be in the Championship battle this year, but with sweeping regulation changes coming into effect the following campaign, it’s not outside the realms of possibility for the French team to be in the title hunt in 2022.