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Alonso: No fond memories from Honda partnership

NEWS STORY
23/11/2017

Like a bad marriage, Fernando Alonso has admitted that he has no good memories from the three-year relationship with Honda.

It was billed as the stuff of legends, a once formidable partnership back together to work some of that old magic.

But it was not to be, rather than echoing the glory days of the late 80s and early 90s, at times this re-partnering bordered on farce.

And through it all there was Fernando Alonso, one of the finest talents on the grid and a man many feel should have more to show for his long career in F1 than just two titles.

Finally, as the 'marriage' between McLaren and Honda went from bad to worse, in a 'them or me' scenario, the Spaniard cried enough, making clear that unless the Woking outfit broke its ties with the Japanese manufacturer he could not continue.

Speaking in Abu Dhabi, ahead of his last outing with a Honda engine sitting behind him, Alonso was asked if there were any good memories he had from the last three years, after all, even the worst marriage has some good moments, right?

Not according to the Spaniard.

Asked to recall a specific race, a moment even, he replied: "It's difficult to pick out one race because obviously the performance was never there. Even the P5 in Monaco last year was still not as fun as it should be.

"What I do take from the last three years is the commitment and the spirit of the team," he continued. "There was not a single person giving up with the performance we had. That is the lesson I will keep for longer."

Not for the first time in his career, Alonso appeared to jump ship just as it came good for his old team (Ferrari), though Sebastian Vettel might have his own thoughts on that one.

The Spaniard, whose previous stint with McLaren ended in the Spygate saga, returned to Woking enticed by the fact that it was re-partering with Honda with which it had previously won title with both Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost.

"I personally had a lot of expectations for the McLaren-Honda project," he admitted. "That was probably the reason I changed from Ferrari because McLaren-Honda was a very attractive partnership after the success they had in the past. But we didn't achieve the results we wanted in the last three years, we didn't perform as we expect so I think now it's time to change.

"I'm quite optimistic," he said of the new partnership with Renault, "seeing what Red Bull is doing right now with the Renault power unit. It's still missing a little bit but overall you fight for podiums and race wins, and that's a very different picture to what we have right now at McLaren.

"I consider Renault my friends and second family so it will be great," he said of the team with which he won his titles. "They are a very, very good company and have a very good engine. I have zero doubts."

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1. Posted by @R1Racing71, 24/11/2017 9:40

"For someone who some regard as the finest talent on the grid, he has made some shocking career decisions as well as being navigated out of some top seats it has to be said."

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