Coulthard: Alonso has no options for 2021

Former McLaren and Red Bull driver has ruled out a Formula 1 return for Fernando Alonso, suggesting the Spaniard has ‘no options’ for the 2021 season.

Hosting the launch of AlphaTauri’s AT01 in Salzburg on Friday, the 48-year-old Scot was asked by AS whether the two-time world champ could return to the sport next year, and did not sugar-coat his assessment.

“I know he wants to come back, but I don’t think he has a choice,” he explained. “I don’t think Mercedes needs him or wants him. I don’t think Ferrari needs him or wants him. I don’t think Red Bull needs him or wants him. Where’s he going to go? Back to McLaren?”

Having left F1 in 2018 and ended his relationship with McLaren last year, Alonso has spent the past year as something of a motorsport nomad, chasing success across a variety of series, while also refusing to rule-out an F1 comeback.

Most recently, the Spaniard competed in the Dakar rally, and was set for a return to the Indianapolis 500 before Honda vetoed his seat at Andretti Autosport — a rejection Coulthard fears won’t be the last for the 38-year-old.

“For me, Alonso is one of the most talented drivers ever in Formula 1, really talented like Hamilton, Schumacher or Senna. Everything he’s driven has been in a hurry. But everyone has their moment and maybe it has come for him,” he said.