Formula 1 news isn’t complete until Fernando Alonso has had his say.
The double world champion finally commented on the motorsport story of 2024, Lewis Hamilton’s move from Mercedes to Ferrari.
Hamilton surprised not only F1 but also the sport worldwide on February 1 when it was announced that he would join the Scuderia from 2025.
The decision unites F1’s most successful driver and team and is one of the most important in the sport’s history, given the legendary status Hamilton would achieve if he won a record eighth title in red.
His former teammate turned long-time rival Alonso raced for Ferrari from 2010 to 2014 and discussed the explosive news at Aston Martin’s unveiling of its AMR24 challenger.
“I was actually training that day, so I missed all the stress of everyone,” he said. “So I was just a day late to the news.
“It was probably a surprise, I won’t lie, but not because of the change itself. It was just because, from the outside, he seemed to be very connected to Mercedes and very loyal to them and things like that. And it was a little unexpected.
“I don’t know the reasons behind [the move]. I haven’t paid too much attention to it and next winter will probably be more of a theme. Since we still have a year to go, I haven’t spent much time thinking.
Unable to resist a blow and his rival, Alonso questioned Hamilton’s comment that it was his childhood dream to race for Ferrari. “It wasn’t his childhood dream 12 months ago, was it? Or two months ago, I guess, because it was a different dream.
Alonso came close to winning the title with Ferrari in 2010 and 2012, finishing four and then three points behind eventual champion Sebastian Vettel.
Commenting on the Italian team, he added: “I hope he enjoys this experience. I think it’s a very special team. It’s more special when you win and that’s what you have to win.
“They have had a very fast car for a few years already and they are 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 dominant Red Bull car, Ferrari was still able to match lap times and be faster than them, in most qualifying .So I think the car should be fast enough.
Hamilton’s decision is not only huge because of the driver and team involved, but also what it does for the rest of his competitors.
Two-time race winner Carlos Sainz will now be without a seat in 2025, while Mercedes will have one of the best seats on the grid to offer the driver who replaces Hamilton.
Alonso has been linked to the position as a short-term solution to running alongside George Russell, the long-term answer, but he insisted his priority was to stay in green.
“I am aware of my situation, which is very unique,” he said.
“There are only three world champions on the grid – and fast world champions, because in the past there were maybe a few world champions but they weren’t so determined to be fast – and I am probably the only one available for ’25, so I have a good position.
“But, at the same time, when I make the decision whether I want to continue racing or not in the future, and I will only talk about it at the beginning with Aston Martin, because that will be my only priority.