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Jenson Paired with Alonso at Honda


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#1 NineOneSeven

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 14:41

When asked about the possibility of being paired with Alonso he seemed to be a little downbeat about the prospect.

He mentioned the fact that Alonso and Lewis didn’t get along last year but then went on to say something about ‘every top driver wants a top team mate’ or words to that effect.

I think Jenson isn’t quite relishing the prospect of being paired with Alonso. The whole Briton verses Spaniard issue may kick off again in the media. Will there be a number one issue? Will it be expected that Alonso gets first call on certain aspects of strategy? He is a two time WDC after all.

Is Jenson afraid of being beaten? Or is he afraid of incurring onslaught of the Spanish and British media.



Can we keep this discussion civil?

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#2 amardeep

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 14:46

> Will there be a number one issue?
Yes.

> Will it be expected that Alonso gets first call on certain aspects of strategy? He is a two time WDC after all.
Tricky, maybe.

> Is Jenson afraid of being beaten?
Bit annoying staying with Honda for so long as number one, trying to get the team built around you, and then a double world champion pitches up just as it all begins to come good.

> Or is he afraid of incurring onslaught of the Spanish and British media.
Probably.

> Can we keep this discussion civil?
Probably not.

#3 dgsg

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 14:46

Originally posted by NineOneSeven
. . .Can we keep this discussion civil?


Probably not.Posted Image

#4 tkulla

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 14:51

It's a moot point. I don't see Alonso heading off to Honda. Renault is just as good a bet for performance, and he has #1 status there. Why go off to Honda to race another quick Brit on his home turf? Seems like a silly gamble without the upside. I see him making a run at Nick Heidfeld's seat at BMW and failing that he'll stay where he is.

#5 Motormedia

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 14:51

Originally posted by amardeep


> Is Jenson afraid of being beaten?
Bit annoying staying with Honda for so long as number one, trying to get the team built around you, and then a double world champion pitches up just as it all begins to come good.



Eh... if the debacle at Magny Cours could be called coming good, then I dunno... Besides, I don't think Alonso would ever go to Honda. There's only one thing good about them at the moment and his name is Ross but what his presence will mean in terms of results is still to be seen.

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#6 pingu666

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 14:52

he gets on well with rubens, and i guess he see's no reason to change...

#7 D.M.N.

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 14:56

Originally posted by pingu666
he gets on well with rubens, and i guess he see's no reason to change...


This is probably Rubens' last season in F1, methinks.

#8 NineOneSeven

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 15:12

Originally posted by tkulla
It's a moot point. I don't see Alonso heading off to Honda. Renault is just as good a bet for performance, and he has #1 status there. Why go off to Honda to race another quick Brit on his home turf? Seems like a silly gamble without the upside. I see him making a run at Nick Heidfeld's seat at BMW and failing that he'll stay where he is.


To me Robert Kubica is the reincarnation in essence of Alain Prost (high praise indeed). Ok I’m being flippant but we all rate him as one of the best in the field in terms of raw ability.
Kubica is Mario’s golden child at BMW. He is fast and ‘could’ possibly destroy Alonso in the same car. Would Alonso really do that to himself?

I don’t know if Alonso could take it on the chin. Would he complain? Would he be more like Nick H or Kimi and quietly do his talking in the office? I fear based on his track record he would take the former approach rather than the Kimi approach.

How fond is the German car industry of Alonso? He’s not thought well of in Stuttgart would be my bet. Would BMW look at how Mercedes were unable to manage him as a lesson to be learned?

Alonso is an asset to any race team, but I am not sure if they can offset that against his personality.

#9 NineOneSeven

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 15:14

Originally posted by D.M.N.


This is probably Rubens' last season in F1, methinks.


Shame.. I really like Rubens and I was hoping to see what he could do in a 2009 spec car. If he doesn't perform then he needs to go.

#10 RSNS

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 15:22

I'm sorry to be so dumb, but where did the idea that Alonso is going to Honda spring from??

#11 NineOneSeven

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 15:32

From an Autosport and ITV with Louise Goodman asking Jenson directly about it at the French GP.

#12 RSNS

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 15:35

OK, thanks :)

#13 Hammerlynx

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 17:15

Originally posted by amardeep
> Will there be a number one issue?
Yes.

> Will it be expected that Alonso gets first call on certain aspects of strategy? He is a two time WDC after all.
Tricky, maybe.

> Is Jenson afraid of being beaten?
Bit annoying staying with Honda for so long as number one, trying to get the team built around you, and then a double world champion pitches up just as it all begins to come good.

> Or is he afraid of incurring onslaught of the Spanish and British media.
Probably.

> Can we keep this discussion civil?
Probably not.


1: No. Alonso will be the clear #1
2: No. He knows he will be beaten
3: Sure
4: possible, not likely

#14 quasi C

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 18:15

Their current technical team does not seem strong enough to build a title challenging car, considering the resources they've got. I don't doubt that they will have the best KERS system but that won't be enough. It seems strange he would want to go there, maybe there's a big financial incentive or he thinks the team will eventually come good but he's 27 and I thought he wanted to join an immediate title challenging team.

I think Button is slightly weary of a battle hardened and tough opponent coming into 'his family'.

#15 amardeep

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 18:20

Eh... if the debacle at Magny Cours could be called coming good, then I dunno...

I didn't make it clear, but I was talking hypothetically, imagining that Ross sorts them out, the new design staff get their first full year, the windtunnel works well giving reliable results, the beefed up CFD department start delivering and Honda (Japan) pulls out some amazing tech for KERS all happens and the "next year" promise gets fulfilled. I can hope can't I ? Just don't mention Magny Cours !

#16 AyePirate

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 18:37

If Honda comes right though and Alonso picks up another title he would enter the all time greats conversation.

If he stays at Renault he can merely repeat himself. If he goes to Ferrari its a no-win. He wins a title. That just maintains the status quo.
If Ferrari goes bad, he becomes the man who killed Ferrari.

And if Honda doesn't deliver it's more likely to be blamed on Honda.

#17 Peter Perfect

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 18:51

In answer to the thread question, I sincerely hope not.

Honda need to concentrate on the car, not the drivers at the moment. Button and Rubens get along well. Why rock the boat and make life difficult?

#18 AyePirate

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 19:03

Perhaps with Alonso they could get a better sponsor than Gaia. :p

#19 Motormedia

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 19:49

Originally posted by amardeep
I didn't make it clear, but I was talking hypothetically, imagining that Ross sorts them out, the new design staff get their first full year, the windtunnel works well giving reliable results, the beefed up CFD department start delivering and Honda (Japan) pulls out some amazing tech for KERS all happens and the "next year" promise gets fulfilled. I can hope can't I ? Just don't mention Magny Cours !


You can hope, no harm in that :)

I have no beef with either Honda or Button. I wish them the best. F1 needs more teams fighting at the top but realistically, they seem to have a very long way to go before that happens. I have a hard time seeing Alonso going to Honda, which doesn't seem to hold more potential than Renault. At Renault Alonso has a dedicated team behind him, they have a proven history and they should be able to get back to their glory days given they have some continuity.

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#20 Kenaltgr

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 20:35

Originally posted by tkulla
It's a moot point. I don't see Alonso heading off to Honda. Renault is just as good a bet for performance, and he has #1 status there. Why go off to Honda to race another quick Brit on his home turf? Seems like a silly gamble without the upside. I see him making a run at Nick Heidfeld's seat at BMW and failing that he'll stay where he is.


Didn't see Piquet moving over to let Alonso through like Barrichello, Irvine and Schumacher's other teammates. Alonso has equal status at Renault, the same thing he would get at Honda.

#21 Dalton007

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 20:37

Alonso should stick with Renault, they've won championships. I would love to see Jenson driving a BMW next year but I guess he's signed up with Honda.

#22 Tenmantaylor

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 21:37

Originally posted by Dalton007
Alonso should stick with Renault, they've won championships. I would love to see Jenson driving a BMW next year but I guess he's signed up with Honda.


So had Lotus when Senna joined. So had Williams when Ralf joined. Doesnt always work out like that.

#23 Racer Joe

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 02:43

I don't get the feeling that Renault will be able to recapture their 2005-6 form in the near future, or perhaps even ever. It is very very hard to keep up with Ferrari/McLaren, and catching them would be doubly as difficult. They are not as well funded and resourced. Even looking back to 2005/6 they were as competitive as they were because they used their "quirky" weight distribution well with the Michelins and no one else seemed willing to replicate that.

Honda has the allure of Ross Brawn. Maybe that is why Alonso is interested, if he is as reported. But it would be, in the short term at least, jumping out of the hot pan into the fire.

#24 spyduh

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 03:28

I think Rubens has the upper hand on Jenson this year.

Nick Fry recently said they've had quite a few offers, and neither driver are safe for 2009.. maybe both will go?

Hope rubens stays :)

#25 NineOneSeven

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 10:51

Alonso in my opinion needs to keep his head down and plug away and remind all of us why we loved him prior to his joining Mclaren Mercedes.

This is my view on his options:

Ferrari: They respect Alonso but are wary of him. They have Kimi and have no need of Alonso. I also think Kimi is harder than Alonso and Alonso would come off worse in the mind stakes when they took it to the track. However if Kimi leaves then I can see it happening and Alonso being invited to Ferrari.


Mclaren: Never again, for either party.

Renault: Would like to retain him but it looks unlikely.

Williams: I can only see Alonso going there as a working holiday to work with Frank and Patrick. Otherwise why would he go there? No reason for it. However who would write off a Williams resurgence with the new rules being introduced? Personally I’d like to see Williams at the sharp end of things.

Redbull: Again I see nothing in RedBull that would invite Alonso to that team.

BMW: Now were talking potential! I think Alonso should aim for this team. Again I think BMW would be wary of partnering Alonso with their super fast wonder boy that is Kubica. Kubica may hurt Alonso and would Alonso be man enough to take it on the chin? Or would the fall out cause disruption? Alonso is vocal and it doesn’t seem he will change that approach.

Toyota: Money simple as that.

Honda: They have a lot of potential and are geared up for 2009. They have Ross Brawn and he is surely going to make his contribution felt clearly in 09. Also they have deep pockets and an admiration for Alonso despite the 07 Mclaren debacle.

#26 Melbourne Park

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 11:08

I guess it depends on whether he's prepared to work as an equal with Jenson. If he would not, then considering the amount of work needed to be done, and Jensen's familiarity with everyone, it would not help the team IMO. But if FA was prepared to work as a team player, IMO the team would be quite a bit better off. Ross Brawn is familiar with Rubens though, and who knows how Honda really are going for 2009 - they are reported as being well advanced though? Finally I think that if FA was prepared to wait a further three more years for the car to be a top one, then it would work, because it might take a few years. He certainly would add prestige to Honda although he would not come cheap.

#27 potmotr

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 11:08

Alonso is a great driver, but I think Honda would be wrong to take him now.
They have two very good drivers already, but a history of rubbish cars.
Get the car right first, then go for a top line driver.
Taking Alonso at this stage would add too much pressure.

#28 RSNS

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 11:16

This is not an answer to the thread, but to speculation on Alonso going to Ferrari. It is true Ferrari does not need Alonso. Massa is nos charismatic, but he is delivering, and Raikkonen is a very solid performer.

Alonso and Massa might lead to troubles. Alonso and Raikkonen would work well, I think. Alonso admires Raikkonen, and they are balanced, I think, in terms of driving.

While I agree that Alonso prefers no 1 status, I don't think last year's debacle was entirely Alonso's fault. WIth hindsight there seems to be enough paranoia generated by Hamilton-Dennis to unsettle a sensitive driver like Alonso. PLEASE DO NOT COMMENT THIS PARAGRAPH in this thread. That would be hijacking; I won't start a thread on this, but feel free to do it.

As for other teams:

I don't see Alonso at Williams: Alonso needs a kind, nurturing environment, and whatever merits Williams' have nurturing is not part of them.

Toyota would be a good bet. BMW I don't know, and I don't think Alonso would like to be paired with Kubica: he publicly said he thought Kubica the best of the current crop of drivers, so...

#29 potmotr

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 11:58

Originally posted by RSNS

Alonso and Massa might lead to troubles. Alonso and Raikkonen would work well, I think.


I'm not so sure. Alonso appears to have matured a lot since last season, and now appears to have a more easygoing and philisophical persona, in public at least. Maybe that is because he is in a poor car.
But I think Alonso has demonstrated that he works best as the undisputed number one within a team. He has a history of getting a rattled when his team mates are quicker, as was demonstrated with Fisichella (on occassion) and Hamilton. But perhaps a more Latin team like Ferrari would be able to handle his occassional outbursts of anger, just like they did with Jean Alesi.

#30 undersquare

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 13:12

I saw a quote from a Renault engineer saying Fernando didn't attend the canada debrief, and "cares only about Fernando". I think he's leaving.

Where to go, well if Ferrari aren't ready and BMW are sticking with Kubi, Honda are as good as anyone aren't they? They spend more than Renault, and have totally committed already to next year's car. Their current form is no guide.

For Honda, I suspect Jense has lost his front wing once too often, it must be infuriating for the team.

#31 Tenmantaylor

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 13:18

Next years rule changes are by far the biggest shake up since post 97 so I think going to a team that is going to spend alot of money and has some great people overseeing development (brawn) makes sense. Id consider taking a chance at Honda if I was Alonso. If he does I think it may kill off Jensons career or at least kill off his image of being one of the best drivers which he clearly isnt. He's a Coulthard at best minus the jaw.

#32 Buttoneer

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 13:34

Ross believes in the benefits of #1 status, so I think he's naturally inclined to accept a demand from Alonso that he wants that if negotiations are taking place. If Button knows about this, I don't think he'd agree to stay unless the money made it worthwhile. Sad but true.

Alonso must be regretting some of his decisions last year. A year of biting his tongue could have gotten him both the championship last year and a competitive car this year.

#33 drivers71

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 13:56

Not sure where JB got this information from, or his motives for going public with it. If, and it's a very BIG if, in my case, FA did move to Honda, he would have no need to insist on No1 or equal No1 status in the team. It would quickly be established who was the fastest race driver (whether his team mate was JB or RB) and it would cease to be a problem. I'm sorry to say that the non-delivery of stellar performances by JB, over the past 5 years, let alone lack of finishing in the first three, is a big disappointment to me. Furthermore, it appears to be getting more and more unlikely to improve, with time.
But again, I don't think such a move is likely.

#34 potmotr

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 13:58

Originally posted by undersquare
For Honda, I suspect Jense has lost his front wing once too often, it must be infuriating for the team.


I'd say it's more infuriating for Button. He loses his wing so much because he's mired in the midfield minefield. I think he's proved he can run at the front, he just needs the equipment to do so.
Would have been facinating to see Jenson teamed up with Lewis at McLaren this year, as was rumoured for a short time.

#35 Buttoneer

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 14:02

Originally posted by drivers71
Not sure where JB got this information from, or his motives for going public with it.

He was asked the question by Louise Goodman on ITV, he didn't offer the information up.

#36 NineOneSeven

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 14:03

Personally I'd like to see Jenson and Rubens at Honda for next year with Bruno Senna as Test driver ;) If Rubens goes then I'd like to see him pass the torch to Senna.

I'd like to see the drivers stay the same at BMW with perhaps Adrian Sutil in line for the 2nd BMW seat if poor Nick gets shuffled off. I'd rather Nick overcame his difficulties and brought it back to Kubica though. Nick is one of the admirable sportsmen in the field.

Ferrari wise, if Kimi goes I'd like to see Nico take that seat. As totally intangible as this sounds; I feel his performances deserve it.


As for Alonso. I think perhaps Renault as a team deserves a little better team oriented driver then Alonso is proving to be this year. I think the love affair is over between them, although Renault would and could never say no to a driver of Alonso's abilities.
If Nick gets dropped by BMW for whatever reason (and I hope that doesn’t happen) then he would bring a stable consistent hand to the team. Nelson doesn’t improve then I’d go for another GP2 sensation, although that may be rash and I recognise that.

I think Alonso will be destined for Toyota or Honda. I hope he gets a seat next to Trulli at Toyota. Everyone in that group needs an arse kicking to shake it up, apart from Trulli who deserves vengence in the form of a rematch with Alonso. ;)
Perhaps the critical vocal aspect of Alonso can shake Toyota up in a positive way.

#37 drivers71

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 14:10

Originally posted by Buttoneer
He was asked the question by Louise Goodman on ITV, he didn't offer the information up.


Sorry, I switch ITV off as soon as they reach the chequered flag.
What was the question she asked, Buttoneer?
"Who will be your partner next season?"
"Would you like Alonso as your partner next year?"
"What would be your worst scenario for next seaon?"
"Are you joining Alonso at Renault next year?"
"Are you swapping places with Alonso for next year?"

I'll withdraw my bold statement that Alonso will not drive for Honda next season, until I know what was asked. :smoking:

#38 tkulla

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 15:14

Originally posted by Tenmantaylor
Next years rule changes are by far the biggest shake up since post 97 so I think going to a team that is going to spend alot of money and has some great people overseeing development (brawn) makes sense. Id consider taking a chance at Honda if I was Alonso. If he does I think it may kill off Jensons career or at least kill off his image of being one of the best drivers which he clearly isnt. He's a Coulthard at best minus the jaw.


Wow, that's a bit harsh. I rate Button as one of the top 5 drivers in the sport, along with Kimi, Alonso, Hamilton and Webber (I know everyone is in love with Kubica right now, but I need to see a bit more from him before I place him in this group). And frankly, at Honda, I would put a bet down on Jenson getting the better of Fernando, much like Lewis did. I used to rate Kimi and Fernando as a cut above, but after last year I could no longer do so. Kimi is barely able to edge out Massa, who I consider to be a mediocre talent, and Alonso couldn't beat a rookie (though clearly a talented rookie). Both of those drivers had "home team" advantage, and I think that same advantage would allow Button to get the better of Alonso at Honda.

#39 David M. Kane

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 15:28

Toyota...why would he even consider Honda? Even Ross Brawn won't be able to save that dog.

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#40 Galko877

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 15:30

Originally posted by NineOneSeven
When asked about the possibility of being paired with Alonso he seemed to be a little downbeat about the prospect.

He mentioned the fact that Alonso and Lewis didn’t get along last year but then went on to say something about ‘every top driver wants a top team mate’ or words to that effect.

I think Jenson isn’t quite relishing the prospect of being paired with Alonso. The whole Briton verses Spaniard issue may kick off again in the media. Will there be a number one issue? Will it be expected that Alonso gets first call on certain aspects of strategy? He is a two time WDC after all.

Is Jenson afraid of being beaten? Or is he afraid of incurring onslaught of the Spanish and British media.



Can we keep this discussion civil?


Question Nr1 is: Will it happen at all?
I have my doubts.

#41 Buttoneer

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 15:32

Originally posted by drivers71


Sorry, I switch ITV off as soon as they reach the chequered flag.
What was the question she asked, Buttoneer?
"Who will be your partner next season?"
"Would you like Alonso as your partner next year?"
"What would be your worst scenario for next seaon?"
"Are you joining Alonso at Renault next year?"
"Are you swapping places with Alonso for next year?"

I'll withdraw my bold statement that Alonso will not drive for Honda next season, until I know what was asked. :smoking:

This was during the discussions in the build up to the race rather than after. He was asked whether he was happy with the idea of Alonso joining him at Honda next year. She brought the name into the interview.

#42 rayyu882

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 15:35

Originally posted by David M. Kane
Toyota...why would he even consider Honda? Even Ross Brawn won't be able to save that dog.


At least Honda won a race in this era... Toyota???

#43 Galko877

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 15:53

Originally posted by NineOneSeven



Honda: They have a lot of potential and are geared up for 2009. They have Ross Brawn and he is surely going to make his contribution felt clearly in 09. Also they have deep pockets and an admiration for Alonso despite the 07 Mclaren debacle.


I rate and like Ross Brawn very much, but not even his person is a guarantee for success. Let's not forget it wasn't just him who made Ferrari great. Look at Adrian Newey! He looked like the king of designers at Williams and McLaren but hasn't really done anything special since he is with Red Bull, although Red Bull too has the money and resources.

If I'd be in Alonso's shoes I would sit still in my Renault in 2009 and then by the end of that season everything would be a bit more clear about what team has and what team has not potential under the new rules. And who knows even Ferrari may have a free seat by then. But if he is jumping to another team after just one season with Renault and then (if that team fails to deliver) jumps to another and another, he could look like an idiot by the end of his career. He is a great driver but he needs to prove he is also a reliable teamplayer and sees the bigger picture.

Also from Honda's aspect I would wait. I think Ross Brawn said last year that first they need to build a competitive car and then look for top line drivers. I agree with that view. If they sign Alonso and the team keeps on struggling it will only bring bad blood between them. It wouldn't take long until Alonso publically slags them off and starts to court other teams, like he does these days.

BTW, I think people are reading too much into this "Alonso contacted Honda" story. Even if true, that's far from meaning he will go there. He is considering his options and collecting info for his decision, which is only natural, but last year he also contacted Red Bull and didn't end up there.

#44 WACKO

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 16:40

I'm not convinced Honda will be Fernando's obvious choice for 2009. They are too far away. It wouldn't make sense to abandon Renault for Honda. I think he knows exactly where he wants to be :cool:

#45 Jones Foyer

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 16:58

Originally posted by David M. Kane
Toyota...why would he even consider Honda? Even Ross Brawn won't be able to save that dog.


He had to try to save the dog this year, pretty much a hopeless prospect.

BUT:

Next year, he's making an all new...uh, dog, so that will be a huge difference. But It won't be a dog, hopefully it will be a thoroughbred.