Monaco GP - Fernando's world

5.27.2012
Monaco, 27 May – In a TV interview given to Sport Mediaset’s Giorgio Terruzzi today, Fernando Alonso dispensed with the usual technical comments to talk about a less well known side to his persona, maybe one that has more in common with those who follow him at home and whom he has tried to make himself more available in recent times. “In Australia, I began using Twitter because it’s a way of being close to the fans and to help them understand what my days can be like, training and what it means to be a Formula 1 driver. It’s also a way of putting out less well known things. It’s neither fun nor a pain, just a bit more work every day to help people understand our world and what an average day entails.” Fernando feels the press is all about getting a scoop and technical matters, while in fact a lot of people want to know more about the human side. “Through Twitter I have replied to some of the seven thousand questions posted by fans: they don’t want to talk about blown exhausts and diffusers, they’d rather know if I need the toilet before the start, or what we look at when we look at on the screen when we are in the garage, because the TV at home shows us looking at a screen but no one knows exactly what we are looking at. Like everyone, there are times when I don’t feel 100%, because I’m preoccupied by something, but this sport is special and requires maximum concentration when you jump in the car and pull down the visor.” Just like everyone, Fernando doesn’t feel he is perfect. “Every day you find something about yourself that you’d like to change, your character, an approach to certain situations, how to become a better person, a better partner, a better brother, a better son. We all try and do it, but it’s not easy and you can never be perfect, as everyone has their own foibles. With people close to you, family and friends, one tries to be loyal, always close by, in the bad times as well as the good. Then, definitely when you are famous, it’s even harder to please everyone, because we are not all equal, but one has to accept that and just try to be better.” Asked to comment on Pastor Maldonaldo’s win in Barcelona, Fernando claimed he was not surprised. “His win simply showed that all drivers here are very talented, which is what is required in Formula 1. In Monaco, Maldonaldo won in the World Series, in GP2 and in all the categories he has raced in, therefore if he was to win here, that would not be so surprising given he has shown he has the talent several times. On top of that, one has to say this championship has thrown up one surprise after another. There is no single car dominating or two or three teams sharing all the wins, rather there are six or seven teams, something we haven’t seen for years.”

Fernando also spoke about Massa, whom he holds in high regard and has faith in. “This is not a good time for Felipe in terms of results and he’s had some bad luck in the races, with only a few points, but now we must support him as a team, because even if you are alone in the car, there is a huge group of people behind us, not just here at the track but also back at the factory where the cars are prepared. Felipe has been with Ferrari for many years and he is a super guy, not just as a driver but also as a person, as a friend and companion and we are all with him to support him, hoping the results will come.”

The difficult economic situation currently affecting his country is a cause of concern for Fernando. “I have so many friends who face an uncertain future, in terms of work, or their dreams of achieving something such as opening a shop or starting a business, because today, it’s not easy to put ideas into practice., In my position, it’s hard to give advice because it could be taken the wrong way. I feel privileged because I am doing what I love in Formula 1 and am well paid as is the case in sport in general, but it has to be said you don’t get here by magic. I was telling the team about when I was racing in the Italian karting championship in Lecce: when I was thirteen, my father drove on his own 23 hours non-stop. On Sunday after the race, we went back home another 23 hours in the car, which I spent studying because I had an exam the next Tuesday. Of course, it was not an enormous sacrifice, but an example of how you have to work for what you want and there is a reason for everything. The young always have to fight even in the hard times.”

Ferrari has been Fernando’s family since 2010 and he says he has always given it 100%. “From the 1st January to the 31st December I am a driver and I give my all, working in the simulator, keeping fit and motivating my team. The team has given me everything it can, has taught me so much in terms of driving, strategy and the approach to the races. From the moment I arrived to today, I feel I have improved as a driver and a communicator and also as a person. Now I just need to win the championship to complete this great adventure which started back in 2010.”

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