Former F1 driver Marc Surer feels that Alpine was right to not offer Alonso a longer contract as his form is certain to dip going forward.
Alpine had offered Alonso a one-year extension which was far shorter than what the two-time world champion was hoping for.
As a result, Alonso worked out a deal with Aston Martin, who had a vacant seat in the aftermath of Sebastian Vettel’s retirement call.
“There comes a time when something happens physiologically to a driver and you don’t have the same abilities you did when you were younger,” Szafnauer had said while discussing the deal kept on the table for Alonso.
“We are in favour of ‘yes, if you’re performing to the high level, for sure we’ll keep you’. But let’s do it one year at a time – and I think he wanted a longer duration.”
Surer agrees with this and believes Alonso’s abilities will soon begin to diminish.
“The clock is ticking for Alonso,” he said on the Formel1.de YouTube channel.
“He can maybe continue in this form for another year or two. I am [sure] at some point it will subside.
“I think a driver loses a few hundredths of a second a year, but he compensates for this with his commitment and experience. Nevertheless, sooner or later it will have an effect. Especially in qualifying, when pure time really counts.”
Surer explains why Alonso left Alpine
Aston Martin owner Lawrence Stroll has invested significantly in the team since taking charge.
While results have not been great for the team this year, Alpine has shown little to no progress since getting rebranded from the Renault days.
“Alpine are stagnating a bit,” Surer said.
“Compared to last year, they are standing still. It’s not like they are on the rise now. And at Aston Martin, there is at least hope with the new people, who are actually all too late for this year, going up next year.”
“There is also the fact Aston Martin were willing to offer a longer deal. “The older he gets, the smaller the chances he can still drive for another team,” said Surer.
Even if Aston Martin make big strides in the coming years, Surer doesn’t believe Alonso has the ability to push for another world championship.
“He’s seen with other teams how long it takes to get up. It won’t happen in a flash,” he said.