Alonso reveals French fancy

Fernando Alonso has vowed to put on a good show for his French pay-masters this weekend, even if his future at Renault is unclear.

Alonso’s frustration with a team languishing in a lowly seventh in the constructors’ championship is growing with every race.

Earlier this week it prompted the Spaniard to comment that he did not know whether he would remain at Renault beyond this year.

“It’s not been a good year so far, worse than we expected. We have not been on the podium, let alone won a race,” remarked Alonso.

“We have a lot of work to do. I will take a decision on my future towards the end of the year when we’ll be able to see how far we have come.”

Ahead of this weekend’s French Grand Prix, Alonso has claimed just nine points this season, finishing in the top eight once – sixth in Barcelona – in the last five races.

On his last outing in Canada, the 26-year-old qualified a fine fourth, only to spin out after 44 laps, adding to his angst.

“It’s clear we missed a great opportunity to score some big points in Montreal, but we must remain positive and keep moving forward,” insisted Alonso.

“Our level of performance there showed the progress the team has made and we must now continue our efforts because we can see the rewards.

“I know that everybody in the team is doing their best to improve our performance, and that will pay off in the end.”

At least Alonso, along with team-mate Nelson Piquet who has yet to score a point in his rookie season, will receive strong support from fans cheering on Renault.

“There are always lots of people associated with the team watching the race and wearing the team’s colours, which is a big source of motivation,” added Alonso.

“As it’s the French Grand Prix and the team is French, I have enormous motivation to have a good weekend, and I will again give my maximum.”

Piquet knows he has to start scoring otherwise he is likely to be replaced sooner rather than later, but feels he is under no extra pressure simply because he is on home soil for his team.

“I always expect the most from myself at all the races and always push to the limit anyway,” assessed Piquet.

“It’s obviously an important race for the team and I would love to get my first points on Renault’s home ground, so that has to be my target.

“I’m sure there will be a lot of support for the team and I will try to draw on that. I will need to qualify well as it’s a difficult track to overtake on, and if I can do that then I think we can have a strong race.”

More in this Section

Breen and Nagle still to finalise plans for 2020Breen and Nagle still to finalise plans for 2020

Ronan O'Gara: Munster lack killer nous to turn three into sevenRonan O'Gara: Munster lack killer nous to turn three into seven

Brendan O'Brien: Finding balance between ‘Faz’ and ‘Boss’Brendan O'Brien: Finding balance between ‘Faz’ and ‘Boss’

Reece James signs new five-and-a-half-year deal with ChelseaReece James signs new five-and-a-half-year deal with Chelsea


So I’ve booked my holidays. And before you ask, yes, I’m basing it around food and wine. I’ll report back in July, but I thought readers might be interested in my plan should you be thinking about a similar holiday.Wines to pick up on a trip to France

Esther N McCarthy is on a roll for the new year with sustainable solutions, cool citruses and vintage vibes.Wish List: Sustainable solutions, cool citruses and vintage vibes

They have absolutely nothing really to do with Jerusalem or indeed with any type of artichoke, so what exactly are these curious little tubers?Currabinny Cooks: Exploring the versatility of Jerusalem artichokes

Arlene Harris talks to three women who have stayed on good terms with their ex.The ex-factor: Three women on staying friends with their former partner

More From The Irish Examiner