Fernando Alonso continues to put it out there that he is open to any offers for next year, apparently resigned to the fact that Honda is unlikely to produce a winning car, by his August deadline, and at the same time hardly thrilled by the prospect of McLaren becoming a Mercedes customer team.
Speaking in Baku, Alonso reiterated, “As I said many times, I want to win next year and I don’t want to gamble too much in any decision, I want to be more or less safe in wherever I go for.”
“Very open for anything so let’s see what the next months bring for McLaren, because it’s a team that I’m running now, a team that I like and in the last two or three years we’ve put a lot of effort in all together to grow up in this project. We’ll see what happens.”
Although Red Bull and Mercedes appear to have their drivers set for at least a couple of years, while Ferrari are unlikely to welcome the Spaniard back to Maranello, Alonso believes that nothing is cast in stone when it comes to the driver market.
“There are some movements out there,” he insisted the Spaniard. “I know there are even more movements than probably we all know and there are some teams we think are set for next year, I don’t think it’s so clear that they are 100 per cent confirmed.”
“I think there will be a lot of [driver] changes for next year. I will try to stay calm and pick up the best decision for next year.”
Many are predicting a split between McLaren and Honda, with the Woking outfit reverting to Mercedes customer engines, which they were using until the switch to the Japanese manufacturer in 2015.
When asked if Mercedes power would do the trick, Alonso replied, “Not really, it will not change much.”
The double F1 World Champion is expected to make a call on his future after the summer break in August, “Obviously in McLaren at the moment we are not very competitive and we know one of the parts, the engine side, is not competitive enough to win.”
“I’m sure that the team is exploring whatever possibility to make this competitive and hopefully next year McLaren will be in a different position.”
“It’s what we all want but in my case, it’s independent to whatever engine they have. I just want to win. We’ll see what happens,” added Alonso who has not been on the podium since 2014 and last won a a grand prix in 2013.
Big Question: What F1 winning team options are there for Fernando beyond 2017?