Alonso to miss Alpine car launch after cycling accident

Motor Racing - Formula One World Championship - Abu Dhabi Grand Prix - Race Day - Abu Dhabi, UAE

Fernando Alonso will miss the first Alpine Formula 1 car launch next week as he continues his recovery from a cycling accident.

The two-time world champion fractured his jaw while cycling in Switzerland earlier this month, with the 39-year-old requiring surgery on his injuries.

Alpine are set to unveil their car, the A521, next Tuesday through a virtual event held at their Enstone base.

In a statement issued by the team, an Alpine spokesperson said: “We regret to confirm that Fernando Alonso will not be present for the media Q&A on this occasion. The sanitary situation and corresponding regulations in place do not allow him to do any communications and marketing activities while he undertakes his critical season preparation.

“We will instead publish a Q&A with Fernando for media use and he will be available for media in Bahrain for official pre-season testing.”

Alonso was not involved in a test at Paul Ricard earlier this week, as Esteban Ocon and junior driver Christian Lundgaard drove the 2018-spec RS18 in preparation for the new season.

Pre-season testing begins on March 12 in Bahrain, with three days scheduled.