Fernando Alonso could be racing past his 44th birthday according to team principal Mike Krack, who said he hopes to keep the world champion at Aston Martin past 2024 and the end of his current contract.
Alonso moved to Aston Martin from Alpine after they planned to retire him to their Le Mans project from 2024, but he’s still going strong with at least a year left at Silverstone and could be racing for even longer than that.
Aston Martin finished seventh in the 2022 constructors’ champions with a best finish of sixth, but Alonso‘s eight podiums with the team have fired them to fifth in 2023 and only just behind McLaren with over five times as many points as 12 months ago.
“I think I don’t have to answer that question, absolutely yes,” Krack told the media when asked if he wants to extend Alonso‘s contract. “I think we have we have received a remarkable team player, constructive at all times, especially when it was difficult.
“When the car was competitive or more competitive it’s obviously easier to be constructive.”
Krack added he doesn’t share Alpine‘s concerns regarding Alonso‘s age, he’ll turn 43 midway through the 2024 season and made his F1 debut before McLaren‘s Oscar Piastri was even born.
Krack: Long honeymoon period for Alonso at Aston
Krack added the whole season has felt like a honeymoon period for Aston Martin, after they failed to score in seven races in 2022, Alonso started 2023 with three consecutive podiums and six in his first eight races.
Though the headline results did dry up, making just two more trips to the rostrum in the 14 races since, Alonso remained calm through that period and even said after the summer break he’d be happy with one or two more podiums to finish the season.
The team reached a nadir at the start of the Americas leg with three Q1 eliminations between the United States and Mexico City GPs, but Krack said he’s only had a good experience working with Alonso.
“Well, only positives, I think as a team we were blown away from the first day until today actually,” Krack added. “I always thought it was a bit of a honeymoon in the beginning but I’m quite happy that we have managed to extend the honeymoon a bit longer.
“Let’s take this Mexico example, the true qualities came out. It would’ve been easy for both drivers to take the microphones and slam the team , I think it also would’ve probably been deserved.
“But I think the true qualities of the team-playing character of both drivers came out in that time and that for me is one of the highlights of the season, as a team that we managed to stick together at that time.”