Alonso re-joins Renault F1 team for 2021 season

Fernando Alonso has re-joined the Renault team that helped him secure back-to-back world titles in 2005 and 2006 and will partner Esteban Ocon at the team for next season.

Alonso left the sport at the end of his second stint with McLaren at the end of the 2018 to focus on other objectives, such as the Indianapolis 500 and the World Endurance Championship in which he achieved back-to-back wins in the 24 Hours of Le Mans with Toyota.

Yet there has always seemed to be a feeling that the Spaniard has unfinished business in F1 and a burning desire to add to his two drivers’ titles – something that could still be a possibility with the radical rule changes set to make racing even closer and further level the playing field throughout the grid.

“Renault is my family, my fondest memories in Formula One with my two World Championship titles, but I’m now looking ahead,” Alonso is quoted in the Renault F1 team’s press release. “It’s a great source of pride and with an immense emotion I’m returning to the team that gave me my chance at the start of my career and which now gives me the opportunity to return to the highest level.

“I have principles and ambitions in line with the team’s project. Their progress this winter gives credibility to the objectives for the 2022 season and I will share all my racing experience with everyone from the engineers to the mechanics and my team-mates. The team wants and has the means to get back on the podium, as do I.”

Cyril Abiteboul, Managing Director of Renault Sport Racing, added that there-signing of the experienced champion is a statement of the team’s commitment to again get back to the top of Formula One.

“The signing of Fernando Alonso is part of Groupe Renault’s plan to continue its commitment to F1 and to return to the top of the field,” said Abiteboul “His presence in our team is a formidable asset on the sporting level but also for the brand to which he is very attached. The strength of the bond between him, the team and the fans make him a natural choice.

“In addition to past successes, it is a bold mutual choice as well as a project for the future. His experience and determination will enable us to get the best out of each other to take the team towards the excellence that modern Formula 1 demands. He will also bring to our team, which has grown very fast, a culture of racing and winning to overcome hurdles together. Alongside Esteban, his mission will be to help Renault DP World F1 Team prepare for the 2022 season in the best possible conditions.”

Fraser Masefield

Sports news and features writer, web editor and author.