Alonso wants future decided before US GP

Fernando Alonso wants his Formula 1 future decided before next month's United States Grand Prix, the two-time champion insisting he still needs convincing about McLaren's potential.

Alonso wants future decided before US GP
Fernando Alonso, McLaren with halo
Fernando Alonso, McLaren
Fernando Alonso, McLaren
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MCL32
Fernando Alonso, McLaren
Fernando Alonso, McLaren

Although there have been suggestions that Alonso has agreed an outline one-year extension of his contract to remain at the Woking-based team in 2018, the Spaniard says that nothing is set in stone yet.

And despite a visit to McLaren's factory last week, when he was likely to have discussed his future, Alonso says it will still take a little bit of time before he is ready to commit to his 2018 plans.

"Probably in the next break it will be good to make the final decision," said Alonso in Malaysia. "I think between Malaysia and Japan, we will be busy here working at the track.

"But definitely after Japan that will probably be my wish, my deadline, to make the decision happen – and choose whatever I feel is the best.

"I want to be competitive next year. I want to be back on the podiums. I want to be back in victory. I want to fight for the world championship, and I still need some more information to make this decision.

"But at the same time I remain optimistic, because McLaren is one of the best, or the best team in the history of the sport in F1. So I think we have everything to make it happen."

2018 chances

Although McLaren is convinced about its ability to step up its form next year as it switches to Renault engines, Alonso thinks that nothing can be guaranteed.

However, he is aware that despite its recent troubled time with Honda, the outfit is one of the most successful in the history of F1 so is well-placed to make a leap.

"I think every team will have some doubts next year, because there are minimum changes of regulations," he said.

"But at the same time, I think the rate of development this year has been very high because of the new regulations, so there will be some extra development over the winter.

"You can also change something in the cars that you could not do in season, so there will be always a certain risk for everyone. But all those risks are a little bit less when you are in a big team.

"And as I said, McLaren has been dominating the sport for many years and in the worst years, even when they had some problems in 2009, remember, 2011, when they have straight sidepods and things like that, they keep winning two or three grands prix a year. So, that is why McLaren is a big team."

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