F1 driving is now like being an aeroplane pilot - Fernando Alonso

McLaren's Fernando Alonso has likened the challenge of driving a modern day Formula 1 car to that of a aeroplane pilot

F1 driving is now like being an aeroplane pilot - Fernando Alonso

Carlos Sainz Jr said after the Monaco Grand Prix that while he agreed with claims F1 was no longer as physically demanding as it once was, the mental challenge was now "horrible".

Double world champion Alonso says the role of a driver in this era is more focused on making the package work efficiently rather than pushing the limit.

"You have to control everything in the best and most efficient way, that's your challenge," said Alonso, when asked by AUTOSPORT how he judged the level of F1 driving challenge.

"It is probably like an aeroplane pilot - they just have to control that everything is working fine.

"It's now difficult to push the limit because if you push at the limit something will go into a less efficient mode and that will affect the total laptime.

"You just need to make sure everything is at 100 per cent, but not yourself."

Alonso added he "probably" agreed with Sainz's assessment.

"A lot of communication going on with the team and a lot of steering wheel changes to make sure everything is running efficiently.

"Even the laptime, if you lose half a second for five laps because you're not pushing, maybe it's not even a bad idea because your tyres will be perfect condition for the coming laps and you'll gain one second per lap afterwards.

"This kind of driving is a little bit strange."

When asked if that had made driving frustrating, Alonso added: "A lot, yes."

shares
comments
Canadian GP: Honda upgrade won't give McLaren F1 team power boost
Previous article

Canadian GP: Honda upgrade won't give McLaren F1 team power boost

Next article

Button warns Verstappen over Grosjean 'braketest' crash remarks

Button warns Verstappen over Grosjean 'braketest' crash remarks
Load comments
The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022 Plus

The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022

Mick Schumacher’s knack of improving during his second season in a championship was a trademark of his junior formula career, so his progress during his rookie Formula 1 campaign with Haas was encouraging. His target now will be to turn that improvement into results as the team hopes to reap the rewards of sacrificing development in 2021

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Plus

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. JAMES NEWBOLD hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwarts

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022
When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push Plus

When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push

There was an ace up the sleeve during the 1983 F1 title-winning season of Nelson Piquet and Brabham. It made a frontrunning car invincible for the last three races to see off Renault's Alain Prost and secure the combination's second world title in three years

Formula 1
Jan 13, 2022
How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner Plus

How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner

Brabham’s first world championship race-winning car was held back by unreliable Climax engines – or so its creators believed, as STUART CODLING explains

Formula 1
Jan 10, 2022
The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021 Plus

The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021

Lando Norris came of age as a grand prix driver in 2021. McLaren’s young ace is no longer an apprentice or a quietly capable number two – he’s proved himself a potential winner in the top flight and, as STUART CODLING finds out, he’s ready to stake his claim to greatness…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2022
The original F1 maestro who set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton Plus

The original F1 maestro who set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton

Juan Manuel Fangio, peerless on track and charming off it, established the gold standard of grand prix greatness. NIGEL ROEBUCK recalls a remarkable champion

Formula 1
Jan 8, 2022
How Russell sees his place in the Mercedes-Hamilton F1 superteam Plus

How Russell sees his place in the Mercedes-Hamilton F1 superteam

George Russell joining Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes this year gives it arguably the best line-up in Formula 1 – if it can avoid too many fireworks. After serving his apprenticeship at Williams, Russell is the man that Mercedes team believes can lead it in the post-Hamilton era, but how will he fare against the seven-time champion? Autosport heard from the man himself

Formula 1
Jan 6, 2022
How F1 pulled off its second pandemic season and its 2022 implications Plus

How F1 pulled off its second pandemic season and its 2022 implications

OPINION: The Formula 1 season just gone was the second to be completed under the dreaded shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, but in many ways it was much more ‘normal’ than 2020. Here’s the story of how the championship’s various organisers delivered a second challenging campaign, which offers a glimpse at what may be different next time around

Formula 1
Jan 5, 2022