Fernando Alonso’s manager Alberto Fernandez has revealed that the Spaniard “still respects Honda and its staff”, as the driver prepares to partner up with the manufacturer from 2026.
When Formula 1 enters the new era of engine regulations, Honda will return full time to the sport, providing engines exclusively to Aston Martin through a works power unit deal.
While Alonso is only locked into a contract with Aston Martin until 2024, he could find himself working with Honda should he choose to extend his current deal.
Alonso previously worked with Honda during his tough tenure at McLaren, infamously publicly bashing Honda’s power unit as a “GP2 engine” before quitting the sport all together, taking a two year break from Formula 1.
This controversial past relationship has raised questions about whether Honda would tolerate Aston Martin retaining Alonso in the 2026 season or if the Spaniard would want to work with the manufacturer again.
However, both sides have backed one another following the partnership announcement, with Honda’s boss calling Alonso a “genius” who they “respect highly.”
“If the team decides we’ll have Alonso as a driver again, we will have no objections whatsoever on him driving,” Honda Racing Corporation president Koji Watanabe said.
“We have been accelerating our development during our recent time in Formula 1 while working with Alonso, and that enabled us to win the World Championship.”
“I never thought Fernando was a problem in terms of our relationship with Honda,” Fernandez told Auto Sport.
“I remember that he has said some harsh things in the past, but they were not directed only at Honda, and if there was a technical problem, he has always pointed it out to other people besides Honda.
“He still respects Honda and its staff. I think this can be seen in the fact that at the final race in Abu Dhabi in 2021, Fernando visited the Honda staff and encouraged them to ‘win the championship’.”
When Alonso appeared during the interview with Auto Sport, he was asked directly about possibly working with Honda by extending his deal at Aston Martin, joking that his “contract is very expensive.”