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Alonso Hopeful of Long-Term Sports Car Future

Fernando Alonso feeling comfortable with Toyota, hoping to stay in sports cars long term…

Photo: Toyota Gazoo Racing

Fernando Alonso says he’s expecting to remain in sports car racing for the long-term and that he feels comfortable at Toyota Gazoo Racing and in the FIA World Endurance Championship.

It was announced this week that the two-time world champion will leave Formula 1 at the end of this year and his plans for 2019 are still undecided, although a drive in the Verizon IndyCar Series is heavily rumored.

Alonso comes to Silverstone this weekend as WEC LMP1 points leader after he and co-drivers Kazuki Nakajima and Sebastien Buemi won the 24 Hours of Le Mans and season-opening Six Hours of Spa.

“That’s probably a big possibility, that I run sports cars for a couple of years,” he told Sportscar365.

“I feel good. I feel competitive and I feel a good atmosphere. Obviously, I won Spa and I won Le Mans, so it feels even more positive now.

“Toyota was a team that was very committed and very professional from day one. I like the way they work and the way they prepare.

“The same with WEC – it’s a championship that has opened the doors from day one for me. They are extremely happy and they do everything they can to make everyone happy.

“So when everyone is happy with you, you are happy with them.”

The Spaniard revealed that confirmation of his 2019 plans, in addition to his three scheduled WEC races, won’t be made until later in the year.

“I will not decide or be ready to confirm anything until a couple of months,” he said.

“Maybe October or something like that. It’s going to be a long wait and a lot of predictions.”

“Priority” on Winning WEC ‘Super Season’ Title

Alonso says his renewed priority after taking victory at Le Mans is to win the WEC championship this season.

The news that Alonso won’t return to F1 has avoided a potential date clash between the Australian Grand Prix and 1000 Miles of Sebring, allowing him to complete the WEC season.

Alonso will see out the remainder of this year’s F1 campaign with McLaren but has criticized the on-track product, describing it as “poor” and suggesting other series would offer “better action and happiness.”

“One of the priorities of the ‘Super Season’ was to win the world championship,” he explained.

“Le Mans was the first priority, but the second priority was to become world champion. That’s the biggest thing right now.

“Next year was the clash with Sebring and Australia, so now there is even more priority to WEC and the world championship possibility.”

Daniel Lloyd contributed to this report

Jake Kilshaw is a UK-based journalist. He is a graduate of Politics and International Relations.


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