Fernando Alonso conquers Le Mans 24 Hours with Toyota - reactions
Spaniard has now won two of the three races in motorsport’s triple crown
Fernando Alonso’s debut at Le Mans 24 Hours was described as “exceptional” after his Toyota team secured victory in the 86th edition of the iconic race.
In the Toyota #8 TS050 Hybrid, two-time Formula 1 champion Alonso, Kazuki Nakajima and Sébastien Buemi took first place ahead of Toyota’s #8 sister car driven by Mike Conway, José María López and Kamui Kobayashi.
Toyota team director Rob Leupen praised McLaren F1 driver Alonso for his debut performance. Leupen told Autosport.com: “Considering the fact he’s a rookie, Fernando was exceptional. Especially at night. Seb and Kazuki are two guys you can count on as well, they’re great for the whole team.”
Tom Kristensen, a nine-time winner at Le Mans, added: “Alonso has come and conquered Le Mans, along with his team-mates, and not put one foot wrong as we’ve seen all through the race.”
Alonso has now won two of the three races needed to secure motor racing’s “triple crown”. His victory at Le Mans, plus two career wins at the F1 Monaco Grand Prix in 2006 and 2007, means he needs success at the Indianapolis 500 to complete the set. Graham Hill is the only driver to have won the triple crown.
What next for Alonso?
Last week Alonso admitted he had an “important decision” to make on his future and said he will consider his 2019 options after the F1 summer break. McLaren CEO Zak Brown has also hinted that Alonso could become part of a reported McLaren IndyCar project.
On Alonso’s future, the BBC’s Andrew Benson writes: “Can Alonso now win Indianapolis? Will he stop F1 at the end of this year to focus on IndyCar totally, or stay in F1 and just do the Indy 500 again next year, as he did in 2017?
“These questions will be hanging over him when he returns to his F1 role with McLaren at next weekend’s French Grand Prix.”
Alonso wins at Le Mans - best tweets
How Twitter users reacted to Alonso and Toyota’s victory at Le Mans: