Since his and McLaren’s disastrous tilt at the Indianapolis 500 Alonso has turned his attention to the Dakar Rally, which takes place in Saudi Arabia through January.
Alonso has taken part in a series of cross-country rallies and tests as part of his build-up, with he and co-driver Marc Coma most recently placing third at the Al Ula-Neom event.
“If I go there to make the most if it, yes. If I think on Dakar in terms of winning Dakar, I don’t feel ready.
“I’m perfectly aware of what my lack of experience, I think in other races that I attempt, Indy or Le Mans or Daytona, I felt quite competitive, in a level I could fight for victory.
“In Dakar I don’t think I’m at that level, I need to be the feet at the ground, but I will play a different strategy. I will not be the fastest but hopefully I will be in a good position at the end.”
“That’s the most extreme discipline in motorsport,” said Alonso.
“It cannot be more far apart, Formula 1 and Dakar. Driving technique is completely different, you’re using both feet all the time in Dakar, while in single-seaters you are not even allowed to touch the brake while throttling else the fuel consumption will get very high.
“Reading the terrain and know you are facing every kilometre [something different], while in the circuit everything is optimised lap after lap.
“While there [in rallying] every metre is new so the attention is on another level, for eight or nine hours every day, so it’s quite difficult to adapt.”