‘I am here to stay’ – Alonso extends Aston Martin deal, Latest Others News - The New Paper

‘I am here to stay’ – Alonso extends Aston Martin deal

PARIS – Fernando Alonso pledged his future to Aston Martin on April 11, dashing any thoughts of the two-time former Formula One world champion replacing Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes next season.

The 42-year-old Spaniard has penned a new deal, ensuring that he will drive for the team into 2026 when new regulations in the sport are introduced.

“I’m here to stay,” he confirmed.

The evergreen Alonso had been mooted as a possible contender to succeed seven-time champion Hamilton after the Briton’s move to Ferrari in 2025.

But Alonso and Aston Martin have enjoyed a superb partnership since he moved to the British stable from Alpine.

He secured six of the first eight podiums last season, and displayed his undiminished expertise with second-place finishes at Monaco, Canada and the Netherlands.

Those buoyant performances lifted the team – bankrolled by his Canadian driving partner Lance Stroll’s billionaire father Lawrence – to fifth from seventh last term.

Hamilton’s shock announcement that he was leaving Mercedes for Ferrari inevitably led to speculation that Alonso could end up driving alongside George Russell next season.

But the latest revelation put those thoughts to bed as he nailed his colours to the Silverstone outfit for the forseeable future.

Alonso has won 32 grand prix races, although his wait to add to that tally has gone on for 11 years.

Aston Martin team principal Mike Krack said: “Securing Fernando’s long-term future with Aston Martin Aramco is fantastic news.

“We have built a strong working relationship over the last 18 months and we share the same determination to see this project succeed.”

Krack also said the team and Alonso had been in constant dialogue over the last few months.

“And Fernando has been true to his word – when he decided he wanted to continue racing, he talked to us first. Fernando has shown he believes in us, and we believe in him,” he added.

“Fernando is hungry for success, driving better than ever, is fitter than ever, and is completely dedicated to making Aston Martin Aramco a competitive force.”

The Aston Martin boss noted that this “multi-year agreement with Fernando” takes them into 2026 when they begin their works power unit partnership with Honda.

“We look forward to creating more incredible memories and achieving further success together,” he said.

Alonso is set to become the first driver to take part in 400 grand prix races later this season.

After the opening four rounds of the 2024 campaign, he is eighth in the standings. – AFP

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