Fernando Alonso might enjoy stepping outside his comfort zone more than most Formula One drivers, but even he has his limits.
Alonso told reporters Friday that — though he can be competitive in an IndyCar or an LMP2 racer, despite having no prior experience in either — he know’s he wouldn’t be immediately quick in a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series car. The Spaniard got his first taste of Daytona International Speedway during the Roar Before The 24 on Friday, and was asked during his post-test press conference whether he’s thought about doing a one-off NASCAR race.
“So to answer the second part of your question, not in my thoughts at the moment because I guess NASCAR driving techniques are very unique, those cars,” Alonso said. “I would need a lot of practice, a lot of tests before making that adventure ”
Danica Patrick said in May if Alonso tried wheeling a stock car, she didn’t think it would be possible for him to be competitive out of the gate as he was on his Indianapolis 500 debut. Some took her comments as a jab at the two-time world champion, though his comment suggests she simply said something most racers likely agree with.
Despite his reluctance to tackle the tri oval with a roof over his head, the 36-year-old’s first test at the famed Florida track has piqued his interest in NASCAR.
“You feel — you smell motor racing here, so that’s a good feeling for any driver,” Alonso said. “The speedway is amazing, the size of everything is just huge. I imagine this grandstand full of people for the NASCAR race could be an amazing thing to experience.
“Definitely, I will watch the race on television at least,” Alonso said. ” … So that will be the first step, watching on TV.”
We’d argue, based on Alonso’s Rolex 24 at Daytona helmet design, he already took a liking to DIS from afar and Friday he fell head over heals.
Thumbnail photo via Twitter/@IMSA