Fernando Alonso takes jab at Lewis Hamilton over Ferrari move and puts pressure on Brit | F1 | Sport

Fernando Alonso takes jab at Lewis Hamilton over Ferrari move and puts pressure on Brit | F1 | Sport

Fernando Alonso has questioned whether or not his Ferrari move was really Lewis Hamilton's 'childhood dream', but tipped the seven-time world champion to play his part in World Championship fights, claiming that 'the car is there'.

After signing a new two-year contract extension last summer, Hamilton looked destined to end his stellar F1 career with Mercedes – the team that he joined back in 2013 and has since won six World Championships with.

However, these plans were torn up ahead of the 2024 season when the 39-year-old agreed to join Ferrari for the 2025 season in a move that will go down in history as one of the most dramatic F1 switches of all time. 

Offering his thoughts on the move ahead of the AMR24's launch on Monday, Alonso said: “It was not his childhood dream 12 months ago, no? Or two months ago I guess, because it was a different dream then. »

While Alonso was skeptic about Hamilton's long-term desire to drive for the Ferrari team, he does believe that the legendary Brit has what it takes to bring Ferrari back into World Championship contention. 

“[Over the past few years,] Ferrari had a very fast car and were fighting for big things. Maybe Lewis can bring that extra to fight for the championship. The car is there.

“Even last year, with a very dominant Red Bull car, Ferrari were able to match the lap time and be faster than them in most of the qualifyings, so the car should be fast enough. »

Alonso is facing his own challenges before 2025 arrives. The 42-year-old ended the 2023 campaign in fourth place in the Drivers' Championship, but Aston Martin struggled during the second half of the year and will need to rebuild their momentum ahead of the season opener in Bahrain.

Speaking about the AMR24, Alonso said: “I am incredibly proud of this team and what has been achieved in such a short space of time. Not only the progress on the track but the investment in all areas off track at the AMRTC. I always enjoy this feeling at the start of a new campaign, with this season marking my 21st as a racing driver in Formula One.

“The whole team has worked flat-out on getting the AMR24 ready for the new season, but there are so many questions to answer in testing and the first few races. I am excited to get in the cockpit and start my second season in green. »

This article first appeared in ENGLISH on https://www.express.co.uk/sport/f1-autosport/1865650/Fernando-Alonso-Lewis-Hamilton-Ferrari