'Fast, furious and a fighter'... F1 paddock pays tribute to Alonso

Kristopher Nichols
November 27, 2018

"I think Stoffel is definitely a Formula One calibre driver, so you can see him back for sure".

"I think next year I needed a break and I needed to find again motivation, to relax a little bit - it's been a busy year", he said.

Johnson seemed to enjoy himself in the 2013 MP4-28 McLaren-Mercedes Formula One vehicle, while Alonso took Johnson's No. 48 Chevrolet for a spin.

Johnson, who spent time at the McLaren team headquarters during the week leading up to the swap, also revealed he is excited about jumping in a single-seater race auto.

"And, two or three years ago, in the same place, it was his last race and no-one had all the things that I have received this weekend". I would need to feel very empty next year on the couch and miss it so much that I would consider returning.

"I'll try to discover another new series, a different concept of racing, completely different auto to drive I guess".

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"It's nice that I've raced with him but I never got to fight him which is a shame".

Alonso, who will race in the Indy 500 in 2019, will continue the 2018-19 season with the Toyota Gazoo Racing Team in the World Endurance Championships, where he has three races remaining and is the favorite to win the title. "I saw them doing doughnuts in Turn 8 so I caught up with the leaders and then one of the cars was on the left and one on the right and they went like that all the way to the start finish line". I think in a couple of days [it will sink in].

"Fernando is a true legend".

"Every time I was in the room I could see on my telephone that there were hundreds and hundreds of messages, but every time I sat down in the chair, someone knocked on the door and told me to go out to see another new person".

Two-time F1 world champion Alonso sampled Johnson's NASCAR Chevrolet, as the seven-time Cup champion drove a 2013 McLaren MP4-28 with a Mercedes V8 engine. I had really no time in the weekend.

He had his seat fitting done prior to him arriving to watch Alonso drive his final F1 race - at least for the moment - in Abu Dhabi.

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