Alonso says Hamilton can bring something extra to Ferrari
LONDON – Fernando Alonso can see Lewis Hamilton bringing some extra fight to Ferrari when the seven-times world champion joins Formula One's most successful team in 2025.
The 42-year-old Spaniard, now at Aston Martin, spent five seasons at Ferrari from 2010-14 but was unable to deliver a championship to Maranello.
Ferrari have not won a title since the constructors' in 2008, with Kimi Raikkonen the last driver to take a title in 2007.
"I hope he enjoys the experience, I think it's a very special team," double world champion Alonso told reporters ahead of Monday's launch of Aston Martin's 2024 car at Silverstone.
"It is more special when you win and that's the thing. You need to win and it's a few years already that they have a very fast car and were fighting for big things and maybe Lewis can bring that extra to fight for the championship.
"The car is there. At the end of last year even with a very dominating Red Bull car, Ferrari were still able to match the lap time and be faster than them in most of the qualifying.
"So I think the car should be fast enough."
Hamilton's move from Mercedes to Ferrari on a multi-year deal was announced on Feb. 1.
The 39-year-old Briton said later that driving for the Italian team would allow him "to fulfil another childhood dream."
Alonso said he had been busy training on the day the news was announced and so missed all the excitement.
"It probably was a surprise, I will not lie, but not because the change itself. Just because from the outside it seemed like he was very linked with Mercedes and very loyal to them.
"It was not his childhood dream 12 months ago, or two months ago, I guess, because it was a different dream," he added.
Alonso could now be on the list of possible replacements for his former McLaren team mate at Mercedes, with the Spaniard out of contract at the end of the season and declaring himself fitter than ever.
Asked about any direct contact with Mercedes about the seat, he said there had been "nothing at all".
Alonso did point out, however, that he was the only world champion available for 2025 on the driver market and said he would talk first with Aston Martin once he had decided whether to continue.
"If we cannot reach an agreement and I want to commit to race in Formula One, I know I have a privileged position. I am probably attractive to other teams, the performance that they saw last year, the commitment," he added. – REUTERS