Alpine praise Alonso speed, attitude: 'He's as fast as ever!'

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Alpine chief Laurent Rossi has lauded Fernando Alonso for his speed and attitude in recent races.

After a steady start to his comeback year, the double world champion has established himself as the clear lead driver at the Enstone-based team since Baku, scoring points in the past five Grands Prix.

At Silverstone, Alonso showed his old fire with aggressive performances both in Sprint Qualifying and the race leaving the Spaniard feeling like his old self.

“Yeah, I think I’m feeling better and I’m feeling more of a racer now," he told on Sunday.

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“The first couple of weekends, Bahrain, Imola, it was like everything was starting from zero, very conscious of many things and trying not to make mistakes for the team.

“It’s different now, I’ve got more confidence in the car so I can use my instinct a little bit more now.”

Certainly, Alonso, who turns 40 during the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend, is doing everything Alpine expected of him.

“He is doing great,” Rossi told BBC Sport. “He is as fast as ever. He is certainly extracting the most out of the car.

“The car is not incredibly fast and he still manages to get some super-hot laps and qualify the car very well. So far, so good.”

Before his comeback, there was some concern that Alonso's infamously demanding approach could hurt Alpine, but the CEO says otherwise.

“It has been six months, and I don’t recognise the Fernando that people describe," he said.

“We both expect the same thing from the team. Always challenging any decision, any status quo, to systematically take things a notch up: ‘It is never enough. Getting a point is not good. Getting two points is not good. Finishing second, when it happens, is not good enough. Finishing first – we need to keep being first.’ I like this attitude.

“It is challenging everyone all the time but very respectfully. And he can do it because he has proven himself so it is not like he wants to deflect responsibility.”

While it is known Alonso signed on a two-year deal, Alpine confirmed Fernando is very much part of their plans for 2022.


However, at the same time, the team does have two junior drivers at the top of the F2 standings in Guanyu Zhou and Oscar Piastri.

"It will be a rich man’s problem if at the end of 2022 I have the likes of Piastri and Zhou knocking at the door and at the same time Fernando winning race after race," said the Alpine boss.

“At least I have those options.”