F1 »

F1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix: Alonso considering McLaren sabbatical in 2016?

Ron Dennis suggests he is open to the possibility of star signing Fernando Alonso sitting out the 2016 F1 season until the McLaren is competitive.
Ron Dennis has not ruled out the possibility of Fernando Alonso taking a year out of the sport in 2016 if the McLaren-Honda doesn't represent a significant improvement over the current car.

The Spaniard joined McLaren from Ferrari at the start of the year as part of a multi-million three-year deal, but has been hampered by persistent reliability and performance woes.

Though the man himself has maintained a relatively positive attitude and has repeatedly stated his confidence in the team going forward, with McLaren destined to end the 2015 season with its lowest finish in the constructors' standings since 1980, Dennis has hinted there is somewhat less harmony behind the scenes.

Speaking at a news conference at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Dennis admitted Alonso could push for a hiatus in 2016 with a view to returning in 2017 when a change in the technical regulations are expected to allow McLaren and Honda to make strides.

"I have an open mind to anything. Some of the ideas have involved those sorts of considerations - sabbatical years."

Even so, Dennis maintains all signs indicate a step forward in performance for the 2016 season and any decision is far from being made.

"We have a great number of driver options. We have two of the best drivers in the world in our cars. When we have to take the decision, we will take it together and at this moment in time our drivers of next year are Fernando and Jenson Button."

Should Alonso step down from his race drive, GP2 Series champion Stoffel Vandoorne is likely to step in to drive alongside Jenson Button.

Meanwhile, Alonso has expressed his surprise at the comments, insisting it remains his intention to stay on the grid, adding that Dennis' words may need more clarification.




Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
26.11.2015 - Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-30
26.03.2017 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Race, Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 VJM10
26.03.2017 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H and Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 VJM10
26.03.2017 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08 leads Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Race, Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32 and Antonio Giovinazzi (ITA) Sauber C36
26.03.2017 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Race, Start of the race, Antonio Giovinazzi (ITA) Sauber C36 and Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32 leads Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Renault Sport F1 Team RS17
26.03.2017 - Race, Daniil Kvyat (RUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 leads Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Race, Start of the race, Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 VJM10 and Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
26.03.2017 - Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32 , Lance Stroll (CDN) Williams FW40 and Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB13
26.03.2017 - Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32 , Lance Stroll (CDN) Williams FW40 and Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB13

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


Taipan

November 28, 2015 2:19 PM

It would be a shame to lose him from F1 he's one of the 2 best out there, but if the McLaren is as bad next season is there any point in him staying just to cruise around at the back and break down a lot? Personally I think the McHonda will improve enough to keep him involved next year. Hope so at least.

RoyO

November 28, 2015 2:11 PM

I can't recall a similar situation where one of the best drivers - and arguably the best - has ended up trailing around at the back of the pack with little or no prospect of a competitive car. Every aspect of F1 seems to resemble a collective suicide or a dreary farce.



© 1999 - 2017 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.