Soapbox: Why Fernando Alonso should be champion

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Fernando Alonso, McLaren-Mercedes, Silverstone, 2007 | Daimler ChryslerContinuing our three part series on why each of the top drivers deserves to be champion, today Oliver White will state the case for Fernando Alonso.

Yesterday we heard the argument for Lewis Hamilton – don’t miss the final instalment tomorrow on Kimi Raikkonen.

For now, here’s what Ollie has to say…

Before I begin the journey of convincing everyone why Alonso deserves to win the 2007 title, I must use up some of my 600 word limit and thank Keith for inviting me to contribute to his wonderfully informative and well-written site. I’ve always held F1Fanatic in high regard and although the challenge set was quite demanding, the fact it will be published on such a respected area of the internet makes it all the more satisfying.

So, why do I think the lying cheating scoundrel that is Fernando Alonso should take the title this upcoming weekend?

The answer is actually quite simple, but how I got to that answer when planning this post was interesting. Let’s take a quick look at Alonso’s 2007 campaign and consider what a racing driver is, and what it means to value each and every point one might earn on their way to the final race of a season.

Alonso moved from Renault to McLaren for this year, seemingly following a script that wouldn’t look too out of place in a soap opera. The dramatic switch of allegiances brought the world champion as many new fans as it lost him.

But quickly it became clear that Alonso meant business and wasn’t about to relieve himself of his champion status.

From day one the Spanish sensation set about racing in his now traditional style, claiming points at every available opportunity, racing hard with his competitors and never giving up.

The mark of a true racer, I’ve always believed, is the mantra of the race not being over until the chequered flag is waved. Alonso fulfils this perfectly having pushed until the last corner of the last lap during this season.

Alonso’s pass on Massa during the European Grand Prix was simply breathtaking. It outlined to every Formula One follower that the difficulties McLaren have faced do not detract from mesmerising race craft.

One thing will always remain true: motorsport is about winning on the racetrack. To further add to this, Alonso won in magnificent style in Malaysia, Monaco and Italy, and showed his tenacity at the start of the Belgian Grand Prix, refusing to let Hamilton through. His passionate celebratory jumps show one and all the effort the young man puts into the races, and passion – I believe – deserves reward.

Alonso has had to deal with a fair amount of pressure this year, not only from Hamilton, but also from the team.

However, the experience gained from two titles has shone through, and although Alonso can come across as being a sore loser at times, I believe people tend to ignore the similar comments made from other side of the team when they lose out. Swings and roundabouts? Most definitely.

The damaging claims and penalties made against McLaren this year, along with those made against the Spaniard’s very own reputation will not necessarily tarnish what Alonso is all about. At his heart, Fernando is a racing driver, a driver who will do whatever it takes to ensure he is leading the pack across the start-finish line on the final lap.

What has transpired this season may well indeed damage the personal reputation of the double champion, but his ability and pedigree behind the wheel of a racing car remain.

Alonso’s calm and calculated nature has earned him at least one title already and certainly contributed to the second. But what we all started to see in 2006 was not just a points scorer, but also a hard and fast driver with dedication to the cause and ultimate aim.

More so, this dedication, albeit occasionally floundering in the understandable face of adversity, has come to the fore in 2007, Alonso’s position in the tables proving this.

The 2007 season has shown Alonso’s rivals to be incredible fast and talented, but very few show the release of energy after a race win that Alonso does.

The victorious screams and clenched fists show the richly deserved and rewarding feeling Alonso gets when he wins. This alone – this colossal amount of passion – sets Alonso apart from the others. It sets him as triple world champion.

Oliver White writes for BlogF1.

Photo: Daimler Chrysler

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