Few other things were as exciting at the recent Brazilian Grand Prix as Fernando Alonso picking up yet another career podium, his 106th overall.
There are numbers. There are modest numbers. There are giant numbers and those that the likes of Fernando Alonso have.
Truth be told, there aren’t many like him.
For sure, Lando Norris bagging a hard-fought second, and in so doing, matching his personal best F1 race result, was the other exciting facet about the action at Interlagos. McLaren would’ve asked for a win but a second was in no way an ordinary end to a tough race for the young Briton.
But Alonso’s effort stood in a league of its own.
Probably Lewis would agree, as would Perez, who was eventually bettered by a margin as scant as 0.053 seconds in the dying moments and just ahead of the finish line.
But for all he did and accomplished akin to the tireless lion that he is, Fernando Alonso proved yet again that old is gold and maybe this old isn’t that old after all.
That’s even as Fernando Alonso of Oviedo, Northern Spain is contesting in his twenty first season in the highest echelons of Motorsport.
For someone who already has to his name some 375 race entries, which by the way is an insane number, 106 podiums mean that Alonso is able to land on the podium in every 3.5 races.
In a world so obsessed by numbers and driven by statistics, which number cruncher would remain unimpressed by such a feat?
But where the predicament of the Alonso fan lies, truthfully speaking, is just what to be most impressed by.
Is it the fact that the oldest on the grid is driving like an F1 neophyte or that the double world champion is actually next best to the sport’s biggest current property called Max Verstappen?
Surely, many of us believe and can’t we be even doubted that if Alonso, who began from fourth at São Paulo, did have the car that Perez has, he may just have made Verstappen’s life miserable.
Would he have not? However, racing doesn’t transpire in dreams, only dream-like scenarios happen in a shut eye zone. Reality, often, begs to differ.
But where even the purist can’t differ from fanboy is the very fact that in 2023, Fernando Alonso has proven that he can deliver results regardless of circuit layout, track temperature and that thing called pressure.
And that’s precisely when driving the very same car is another talent who’s nearly half of Alonso’s age and with possibly much better reflexes going by theory.
Though, where real life reflexes and high octane performances matter, then Alonso has smashed his teammate Lance Stroll by a margin as 135 points. Many drivers manage to score that many in two back to back seasons. Last year alone, Fernando Alonso, aptly called the Samurai, failed to score even 90 points.
Then to have scored twice as many with two more races to go does say a thing or two about the humongous potential of a driver who’s nowhere close to stopping. And why should that even be the case? For drivers there are many, but titans ever so few. One of them is among us and is just 25 races away from a quadruple century of Formula 1 Grand Prix entries.
May his next be about as interesting and successful as each of his race wins.