Sergio Perez says Fernando Alonso’s situation is a snapshot at the problems Formula 1 faces as he feels a two-time world champion struggles to reach the points places due to the gap in car performance on the grid.

The Mexican driver says “it’s a shame we’ll lose him” when Alonso bids goodbye to F1 at the 2018 season finale in Abu Dhabi as he ends his career in the sport.

Alonso, who claimed back-to-back F1 world titles with Renault at the beginning of his career, has endured a tough end to his time in the sport since joining McLaren in 2015 at the start of the doomed Honda partnership.

Despite a small revival this year with McLaren switching to Renault engines, Alonso has been unable to finish higher than fifth since the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix – in his final season with Ferrari – which has led to Perez pointing to the team performance deficits denying drivers opportunities to battle at the sharp-end.

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“It shows how bad F1 is, you have one of the best drivers in the world fighting in the midfield, trying to get some points every weekend,” Perez said. “You put him in another car and he wins the championship. That’s just where F1 is at the moment. We are all in that boat.

“He has also been very lucky in his career that he had some very competitive cars and was able to win some titles, he has massive talent and he deserves the success he has had in his career and I wish him all the best. Maybe he will come back? Who knows.

Perez is adamant F1 will be a poorer place without Alonso from next season as the Spaniard prepares for a new era in his career.

While he will complete the ongoing 2018/19 World Endurance Championship campaign with Toyota next year, Alonso has also secured a return to the Indy 500 with McLaren in 2019 and has hinted at further racing plans to be confirmed.

“He’s a great driver. Fantastic personality as well. A great character,” he said. “He loves racing. I have a lot of respect for him for what he has achieved in the sport but also for what he is trying to do out of the sport, with all the other titles that he is chasing.

“I think he’s definitely a great character for the sport and it’s a shame we lose him.”

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