There is little doubt Fernando Alonso is one of the best drivers of his generation, perhaps of all time. So why hasn’t he won more championships than the two he has accumulated? Certainly, there is no denying his commitment from behind the wheel, it’s his consistency and ability to drive a bad car fast that makes him stand out from the rest.
Even Alonso’s might ability wasn’t enough to safeguard McLaren Honda’s problems. McLaren was so frightened about losing Alonso that they were prepared to walk away from a lucrative engine supply deal which involved Honda paying McLaren around $20m a year. They eventually did.
That’s a lot of money to lose for a company used to winning, especially so when McLaren has lost sponsorship deals on the back of a poor run of form that stretches back five years.
McLaren last registered a race victory at the 2012 Brazilian Grand Prix courtesy of Jenson Button. When Alonso was persuaded to join the revived McLaren Honda partnership it seemed only a matter of time before the winning formula was discovered.
Both Alonso and Honda found there was no magic formula after three baron seasons which were largely spent by Alonso complaining about the once mighty McLaren Honda partnership. Any other driver would have been fired, but it seems for McLaren Alonso is untouchable.
Had Alonso been wiser he could and should have won more championships, however, triple, former, F1 champ, Nelson Piquet, reckons Alonso has only himself to blame for the predicament which he finds himself in.
“When you arrive on a team, at first you must be patient and work together, and later you win. But he always wants the best [straight away], and that is not the best way” said Piquet.“Fernando Alonso has had the chance to win up to five world championships, but the reality is that there is always a mess wherever he is,” said Piquet to Spanish a sports broadcaster.“He is a fantastic driver, but also one who generates a lot of problems and in the end, everyone ends up leaving the team. He is very bad politically in his work on the team.”