Alonso and Piquet Jnr confirmed at Renault for 2009

Fernando Alonso and Nelson Piquet Jnr will remain at Renault in 2009

Fernando Alonso and Nelson Piquet Jnr will remain at Renault in 2009

Fernando Alonso has committed his future to Renault, ending speculation over a possible move to Ferrari in 2009.

Renault has become the seventh team to announce an unchanged line-up for 2009 with Nelson Piquet Jnr remaining alongside Alonso.

Alonso had been linked to Ferrari, BMW and Honda at different stages during the season. But after the first two teams confirmed they would stay with the same drivers for the foreseeable future, Alonso was increasingly expected to stay at Renault.

He has enjoyed an excellent end to the season with the team, winning two of the last four races. He scored 33 points in the final four rounds, 13 more than any other driver (Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa each scored 20).

Piquet has not enjoyed a very successful a season in his first year of F1. He had more non-mechanical DNFs than any other driver (seven) and was the only driver to be out-qualified by his team mate at every round.

Earlier rumours suggested Renault might promote Lucas di Grassi or Romain Grosjean in his place. Piquet’s retention is not going to diminish suggestions that, after 2007, Alonso doesn’t want to share a team with a competitive driver again.

But with Renault clearly enjoying a resurgence, the prospect of Alonso facing down Hamilton and the Ferrari duo for the 2009 championship is an enticing one…

Fernando Alonso biography
Nelson Piquet Jnr biography
2009 F1 drivers and teams
2009 F1 season

Advert | Go Ad-free

49 comments on Alonso and Piquet Jnr confirmed at Renault for 2009

  1. santori said on 5th November 2008, 18:58

    Excellent news.

    I want to see Di Grassi and Grosjean in F1 but I don’t see any reason to think they’d do better than Piquet.

  2. Becken – Huge Experience as test driver :-?
    As I have mentioned before, Since 2007 Season start the testing miles per year have been reduced drastically as a result, its mostly the race drivers who have been testing to get better understanding of car for race day. Teams really don’t have luxury to use their test drivers as much as they did till 2006 season. In fact reduction in testing has been one main reason why all the race drivers drive so many laps in FP sessions on Friday.

    Those interested can see the stats of Race weekends at F1GPupdate Website

    As I have stated above didn’t make sense to repeat the investment on new driver

  3. The talking point of “Alonso not wanting a competitive teammate” is tired. When it comes to the subject of one Fernando Alonso, it seems that we throw previous history and logic of the sport aside.

    What do you think McLaren did for the future when the team hired Kovalainen as his replacement? And what did that result in? Every driver out there, no doubt about it, wants a teammate slower than himself. If McLaren were to fire Kovalainen and get someone to challenge Hamilton, do you not suspect Hamilton would grow weary and suspicious of his team? I suspect some resentment would follow.

    But yes. Renault’s retaining of Piquet over two potentially talented (but highly unproven) rookies must mean Alonso is merely the master of the puppet team. It must follow.

  4. PS – Well those that have implied that Piquet has been continued since he doesn’t pose threat to Alonso and that Di Grassi/Grojean may prove handful, you really don’t have to do much to mess up with internal rivals like these. If anyone has been following sports for a long, Trulli’s Performance “Suddenly wendt downhill” after he posted first Renault win ahead of Alonso at Monaco’04 and It was Fisico who had mechanical issues, Botched pit-stops after a emphatic drive to victory after dramatic Australian Season opener at 2005.

    Its Heikki who has to qualify in Q3 with Heavy fuel load through-out 2008 and not vice-versa.

    So there are “Subtle” ways of taming the internal rival and Keeping the “lead driver” happy.

    We would all be too much woolly eyed to assume that teams do provide identical equipment and strategy to both drivers (Hamilton was lucky in 2007 since he was driving in his mentors team)

  5. Filipe said on 5th November 2008, 19:42

    “I can’t believe Piquet has been given another year at Renault. At least we’ve got another season of comedy driving to look forward to…”

    I’m not so sure. I have my problems with Piquet (and I would give the seat to Di Grassi), but during his whole career Piquet had gone for pretty much the same arc:
    1st season on South American F3 – Just ok.
    2st season on South American F3 – Champion.
    1st season on British F3 – Again just ok.
    2st season on British F3 – Champion.
    1st season on GP2 – Just ok.
    2st season on GP2 – Second place (and that’s only because there were a guy named Lewis Hamilton racing against him).

    I’m not claiming he will suddenly start to drive on the same pace as Alonso, but given that his whole career has him underperform as a rookie, but been strong on second season, Renault can hope the same will happen in F1.

    Also, I’m pretty sure the plan for some time now is to debut Grosjean in 2010, so it doesn’t make any sense to give another rookie they didn’t plan to keep a seat and it would be hard to get more experienced drivers (Bourdais, Barrichello) for just one season.

  6. err lets clarify, McLaren originally went all out for Nico but he chose to stay at Williams to build the team around him. I bet he’s regretting it especially concidering the teams current finances and global credit crunch. Even Williams were surprised he did not go to them. McLaren then decided to go for Heiki who is just not currently up to scratch for several reasons. Nico would have been a far more formidable rival to Lewis. After all, McLaren want to win the WCC as well don’t they. Ron coverts that trophy equally. So it makes no sense alleging that McLaren deliberately chose someone not to rival Lewis.

  7. Hey, Guys, don’t get me wrong. My point is: who is more worth to the team? The mediocre Piquet or a good promise as seems to be Di Grassi who has performed well at GP2 last year and who really has a GOOD (ok, I replaced the word!) experience as a test driver?

    My point is: if Alonso has really vetoed Di Grassi (as they did with Heikky), the team has threw away a good chance with a driver who could give much more to the team than the average Piquet and just because Alonso likes to be in comfort zone.

  8. Chaz – Ron Coverts that Trophy would have been a good statement till his mentee didn’t turn up as one of the seat holder.
    Unless the 2009 regulations indeed enable on track racing, we have to live with the fact that till you have front row locked up consistently you are not going to win maximum points. your second driver qualifying mid-field anywhere behind second row ( in last race, british press was worried for Lewis’ safety even on the second row) effectively reduces your WCC chances. Unless Internal politics sidelines Ron Dennis and Mercedes takes more control of the way the that team is operated. It will be status quo at McLaren.

    Interesting thing to see will be Heikki’s second season at McLaren!!! Will he get “equal opportunity” to go for poles or win? or will he be ganged-up against in mid-season following incident like USGP 1st corner melee in 2006 ( which was anyway common place at Indy given the layout of that first corner)and forced out of team to make way of certain German Driver who has shown lot of promise this year driving for a Japanese Marquee, we shall see.

    I have seen strange things in F1 in last 20 odd years, and I wouldn’t be surprised if my prediction does materialize and Hekki shunted out of McLaren

  9. Becken – There is no proof the Fernando Vetoed out Heikki out of Renault. Its just press speculation. given the story that Fernando had just walked out of stormy relationship with McLaren, everybody lapped it without verification. and I needed say which section of Press had flared that speculation.

    PS – The same section of press is still confident Antony davidson will be taking Barichello’s place in Honda. They also had lauded Silverstone podium as fitting farewell to affable brazilian

  10. Roger Carballo AKA Architrion said on 5th November 2008, 20:14

    Yeah. What happens with Becken is that maybe he can’t watch live timing and take a real look at what a driver do, or maybe he do use live timing, but only the line named LEWIS HAMILTON.

    Last race Nelsinho Piquet was 0.1 sec slower than Fred on Q1 and Q2…. I’ve seen rated drivers been slower than that!!! But you need to look… of course.

    Man, I would say that Fred has had a run for his money this year!! In fact, he has run so much last races that he was 13 points of running faster than the current WDC, if you make the count after Hungary.

  11. Yeah. What happens with Becken is that maybe he can’t watch live timing and take a real look at what a driver do, or maybe he do use live timing, but only the line named LEWIS HAMILTON.

    Last race Nelsinho Piquet was 0.1 sec slower than Fred on Q1 and Q2…. I’ve seen rated drivers been slower than that!!! But you need to look… of course.

    Man, I would say that Fred has had a run for his money this year!! In fact, he has run so much last races that he was 13 points of running faster than the current WDC, if you make the count after Hungary.

    Hey, Roger, easy, mate…

    Anyway, I didn’t get your point. I´m just thinking in the team as a whole and not just in Alonso. I think, Lucas could be a good help to “FRED” at the developing of the car instead of Nelson.

    Did you get it?

    About the points, look the last two years and you will undestand why we have a worth champion this year:

    1 Lewis Hamilton 98 + 109 = 207
    2 Felipe Massa 97 + 94 = 191
    3 Kimi Räikkönen 75 + 110 = 185
    5 Fernando Alonso 61 + 109 = 170

  12. Roger Carballo AKA Architrion said on 5th November 2008, 20:33

    Incredible. You compare the points made with that rocket Lewis had this year with the bycicle that won two races with the Alonso driving….. You could even compare Lewis winning in Silverston with the Monza’s exhibition by Vettel….. Just to maintain a balanced opinion. IMO.

  13. Ok, Roger, you started the thing, mi amigo. I was just debating about Piquet and Renault.

    Abrazos!

  14. Roger Carballo AKA Architrion said on 5th November 2008, 21:17

    Hey, man, don’t take it too bad from me. I just wanted to heat up the thing, to make it a bit more interesting.

    Muchos abrazos!!!

  15. Taimur said on 5th November 2008, 21:23

    all due respect to Lewis but this combined tally of last two years amuses me. A million stats like these could be made about many drivers. He is 2008 champion – end of story.

Add your comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

All comments must abide by the comment policy. Comments may be moderated.
Want to post off-topic? Head to the forum.
See the FAQ for more information.