Fernando Alonso picks best three moments of the season with surprise winner

Fernando Alonso: Pundits discuss potential F1 return in 2021

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Spanish racing icon Fernando Alonso picked out his top three moments of the 2021 season – with Esteban Ocon’s dramatic victory in Hungary ranked at the top. Alonso returned to Formula 1 after originally retiring from the sport in 2018.

The two-time world champion left F1 after four seasons at McLaren when the illustrious team were struggling near the bottom of the grid. 

The 40-year-old was reportedly enticed to return to the sport by the imminent regulations overhaul as Alpine – formerly Renault before their brand change prior to the 2021 campaign – seek to contend.

Drivers and teams across the grid have renewed hope that the sport will become far more competitive, and the changes could shake up the grid order to allow a contender to emerge from the shadows. 

Originally intended for the 2021 season, the regulations were delayed a year due to Covid. 

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These regulations are aimed at reducing ‘following car distance’ by removing ‘dirty air’ that leading cars leave in their wake, making overtaking moves more difficult due to the turbulent air flow. 

Cars will differ quite substantially from their predecessors despite power units essentially being unchanged, as sidepods, airboxes, brake ducts, underbodies and both front and rear wings are set to be redesigned. 

The addition of 18-inch wheels will also massively affect the cars, both visually and technically. 

During his 2021 return, Alonso impressed at times with Alpine, finishing 10th in the Drivers’ Championship with 81 points.

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He also ended a seven-year wait to return to the podium at the Qatar Grand Prix, which was surely the highlight of his season.

However, Alonso went in a different direction.

“First, Esteban’s victory,” Alonso told the Spanish edition of Motorsport.com.

“I know I didn’t win, but it still felt like an incredible moment for the team. Everyone was very happy and I was very proud of everyone at Alpine, so yeah…. the win in Hungary.

“Second has to be my podium in Qatar, I had been waiting a long time for that podium, so that will be my second best moment of the year.

“And third… I will say it was Bahrain, the first race I was very excited, I came back to Formula 1 with the team, there was a little bit of extra pressure because a lot of eyes were on us, on that first race. So Bahrain was very special as well.”

F1 will return in 2022 for preseason testing on February 23 before the opening Bahrain Grand Prix on March 20.

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