Aston Martin on Monday announced that two-time world champion Fernando Alonso will sign a multi-year contract with them in 2023. The Spanish driver, who is currently racing for Alpine, will replace a retiring Sebastian Vettel. 

“No one in Formula One today is demonstrating a greater vision and absolute commitment to winning, and that makes it a really exciting opportunity for me,” Alonso said of Aston Martin. “I still have the hunger and ambition to fight to be at the front, and I want to be part of an organization that is committed to learn, develop and succeed.”

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Alonso will race in his 20th season next year. He won the championships with Renault in 2005 and 2006. He took two years off in 2019 and 2020 to race in other series, including runs at the Indy 500.

How did Aston Martin make the move on Alonso?

Getting into the break, Alpine were expected to hold talks with Alonso, who has a contract till 2022. Team principal Otmar Szafnauer said that the driver was very straightforward in saying that the two parties needed 10 minutes to ‘sort things out’. 

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However, the deal hit a speed bump and Szafnauer lost Fernando Alonso. Was money a reason?

“Not just Fernando. Every driver I’ve ever negotiated with, it’s been a question of money. And other things too,” the team principal said. 

“But yeah, for whatever reason, they want the most money and we want to pay the least. And then we end up in some kind of unhappy place for everyone, or a happy place that everyone’s willing to sign.”

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As per Autosport reports, Aston Martin had approached Alonso with a well-rounded package. The team has now replaced a veteran – Vettel – with another – Alonso. 

“I have known Lawrence and Lance for many years and it is very obvious that they have the ambition and passion to succeed in Formula One. I have watched as the team has systematically attracted great people with winning pedigrees, and I have become aware of the huge commitment to new facilities and resources at Silverstone,” Alonso said.