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SportAlonso reveals latest challenge

17:05  20 august  2019
17:05  20 august  2019 Source:   skysports.com

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Fernando Alonso 's CV reads: Two-time Formula 1 world champion, Indy 500 hopeful and keen cyclist. But now we can add to it fashion label entrepreneur, too. For a man pushing his McLaren Formula 1 team as hard as he can, and about to embark on a huge adventure in the Indianapolis 500, you would

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Alonso reveals latest challenge © Press Release

Fernando Alonso has committed to an "intensive" programme of cross-country rally testing as he contemplates participating in the Dakar Rally in 2020.

In his first year out of F1 for two decades, Alonso has raced and tested in different motorsport disciplines this year - and won the World Endurance Championship with Toyota in June.

Having tested Toyota's Dakar car in March for the first time in South Africa, Alonso has now confirmed a five-month programme across Europe, Africa and the Middle East to get up to speed with off-road rallying.

Alonso reveals latest challenge © Getty (FRED TANNEAU/AFP/Getty Images)

"I'm in a mission now, trying to become a more complete driver and to win as many different disciplines in motorsport," said Alonso from the first day of testing in Namibia.

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Alonso has stepped away from F1 in 2019 – his first non-involvement in the championship since 2002 – but he remains closely tied t McLaren and will race in the Indianapolis 500 with the team once again this year as he goes in search of the 'Triple Crown'.

"After winning in Formula 1, in WEC, the Daytona 24 Hours, now it's a big challenge from me to change from asphalt to gravel, to dunes.

"It will require the best from myself and I will have to learn everything from zero. This is quite tempting and quite attractive at the moment for me as a driver."

Alonso reveals latest challenge © Sutton Images

In September, Alonso will make a non-competitive appearance in the Harrismith 400 rally event in South Africa.

"I got a taste of off-road rallying earlier this year and it left me with a good feeling that I want to prolong," said Alonso.

"I knew it would be a totally different experience with a steep learning curve but the Hilux just felt great; it gave me so much confidence so quickly and I was improving loop after loop."

Alonso reveals latest challenge © Getty (James Moy Photography/Getty Images)

"I'm really looking forward to the next few months of training, getting to know the Hilux and working with the team. I've always maintained I want to pursue new challenges in different disciplines and I'm at a great team to do that."

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Fernando Alonso is still the one of the best drivers on the grid despite being 37 years of age. His ability to note the finer points of racing is next to none and when McLaren are in the mix for points this year but it remains to be seen whether they can challenge for race wins in the near future as Alonso states.

But former Liverpool star Alonso thinks squad depth will be the key to mounting a push for the title next season. “I think they need to not just have a ‘short’ team,” he told the club’s official website. “Not 14 players - you need to list 20, 22 players to be able to cope with so many games.

The 2020 Dakar Rally, which Toyota won this year, will take place in Saudi Arabia for the first time early in the new year.

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Alonso reveals latest challenge

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