Fernando Alonso: Lewis Hamilton will be title contender with Mercedes
Fernando Alonso says he is fully expecting Lewis Hamilton to launch a genuine title challenge next year with Mercedes
Fernando Alonso is expecting Lewis Hamilton to be a genuine contender for the world title next season with Mercedes.
Hamilton will join Mercedes from next year after penning a three-year contract with the team following months of speculation over his future at McLaren.
Ferrari driver Alonso considers the 27-year-old to be one of the best drivers in Formula 1 and has no doubts that he will push for the title in 2013.
When asked if he expected Hamilton to launch a genuine challenge with Mercedes, Alonso replied: “I think so, I think he did great in McLaren. He won one world championship, which is the target for all of us.
“He won races, he is considered one of the best drivers and for next year I think he will enjoy more and be very competitive.
“From next year I think he is a clear contender for the championship with Mercedes. They are a top team and with Ross Brawn there and with all the potential of a big company behind they are very strong.”
Current drivers’ championship leader Alonso believes Hamilton’s move to Mercedes is simply a “normal” step in the Briton’s career and backed his decision to leave McLaren.
“I think it’s normal, it’s just steps on your career,” said Alonso. “I said when the rumours were there that for Lewis I think it’s a good thing to move on.
“From McLaren, [Alain] Prost was going out, ]Ayrton] Senna, then it was me, now it’s Lewis. And normally for a better life. For a good change.
“McLaren have not won the constructors’ championship for 14 years and most of these years sometimes with the best car. I am sure Lewis wants to win as well.”