Rumours are gaining momentum that the two-time world champion will leave Ferrari at the end of this season to join Honda’s efforts with McLaren. It will be a reconciliation of sorts for the Spaniard, who split acrimoniously the team after 2007 when he was partnered with Lewis Hamilton.
With Ferrari’s new boss Sergio Marchionne, not exactly seeming too eager to keep Alonso — strange as that seems considering he has been carrying the outfit since he joined the Scuderia in 2010 — it appears that Honda wants to jump in and have the veteran help it manage its new engine program.
Although he has another year left on his Ferrari contract, getting him out would simply be a matter of the right amount on a Honda cheque to Ferrari. Should that happen, there could be some musical chairs in the paddock.
If Alonso leaves Ferrari at the end of the year, the team may walk its Honda payment down the paddock to Red Bull and hand it to Christian Horner as an incentive to release Sebastian Vettel from his deal a year early.
That would leave a spot open at Red Bull, which could be filled by several drivers in the short term, or in the longer term by Russian rookie Daniil Kvyat now driving for Toro Rosso, or by DTM driver Antonio Felix Da Costa, who is the teams reserve driver. Both are potential stars in F1 and it would not be unlikely to see both in F1 next year.
There`s no doubt that Daniel Ricciardo has proven himself as a No. 1 man in an F1 team, so no problems there if Vettel should go.
Alonso’s arrival at McLaren would likely mean Kevin Magnussen’s time with the team is over. The Dane has shown flashes but has also been the target of the stewards for rough driving. He could land elsewhere.