2022 AM Wings_Mono Negative

Fernando in the words of fans


What does the two-time World Champion mean to you?

Passionate, determined, inspirational, talented, charming. These are just some of the words fans have used to describe Fernando Alonso.

Widely regarded as one of the greatest drivers of all time, adoration for Fernando transcends boundaries, be they generational or geographical.

Ahead of his home race, we reached out to some of the two-time World Champion's most ardent supporters and I / AM members to find out what Fernando really means to fans…

Fernando Alonso

Hometown hero

I grew up watching Fernando with my father and now we're going to our first Grand Prix together to see Fernando race.
María Jaime Castillo, 28, Fuente de Piedra, Málaga

"I have supported Fernando for as long as I can remember. My father followed him since he started in Minardi, when I was only five years old. I remember the race days and seeing my father sitting in front of the television with an emotion that I did not understand until I began to grow up and it became a routine for me to enjoy the father-daughter race day.

"After watching the amazing fight with Sergio Pérez last season in Brazil, I told my father that we have to experience something like this together. So, I booked two hospitality tickets so my father can live his greatest dream. It was the salary of three months of work to be able to allow him to live this experience. We will go by car from our town, eight hours of travel. We can't wait to live this experience together.

"I just can't imagine how it's going to be. This is the first time we'll see a Formula One Grand Prix and Fernando. We are super excited, so I just can't thank life enough for what's coming."

IMG 0546
Fernando helped me to climb Kilimanjaro.
Yannick Vega, 34, Pola de Siero, Asturias

"My early memory of Alonso is when he made his debut in 2001 with Minardi. Back in those days, I was living in Belgium and that's when I first started following his career. I was only 11 years old.

"Fernando helped me to climb Kilimanjaro. His grit, determination, resilience - it's a source of inspiration. Nevertheless, I think we also need to value the level of preparation before races – the same that happens before climbing such a mountain. You need to prepare yourself. I tried to channel the same perseverance through difficult moments.

"Last year's São Paulo Grand Prix is special to me because it's a day after I climbed Kilimanjaro and we came out of the national park. We were back at the hotel. Everybody was tired and trying to get sleep before flying back home, but I wanted to watch the race so much that I was walking through the hotel looking for a reliable internet connection which was not easy. I was following the race through my social media and refreshing the news. At some point, I could catch a little clip of that final lap and overtake of Sergio Pérez. An unforgettable moment and very special race."

Aston Martin F1
The day I met Fernando was the best day of my life.
Francisca Añover Gallego, 94, Quintanar de la Orden, Madrid

"Meeting Fernando was the fulfilment of a dream. I can die in peace knowing I've met him. He was so kind.

"I have a lot of affection and love for Fernando – I love him like a son – and I hope that one day we will meet again. I could spend a whole day talking to him.

"I have supported him all my life. I've never missed a race of his. I used to watch every race with my husband until he passed away, but I have continued the habit to this day."

tj tattoo
Fernando signed my arm and I got it tattooed
TJ Cook, 37, and Danielle Molden, 31, Paradise, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

TJ: "When Alonso was driving for Renault, I quickly realised the level of skill that Fernando possessed, especially his overtake on Schumacher at 130R in Suzuka. It really opened my eyes and, following his back-to-back championships that year and also in '06, it was enough to solidify my support for him. It's grown every year since then. Besides his natural talent, I support him because of his singular passion for racing, his discipline, not to mention his funny and charming demeanour.

"My best memory of Alonso obviously has to be meeting him in 2018 when he was racing in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. I travelled from my home province of Newfoundland to Paris and drove down to Le Mans from Paris. This was during a meet-and-greet segment for the drivers. Le Mans was absolutely overflowing with people. For the majority of them there, along with myself, they were there to meet Fernando.

"I shook his hand, told him where I was from. I also asked him to sign my arm and told him I would get it tattooed, which I did the next day back in Paris. They say to never meet your heroes, but after six years I still look at my tattoo and it still feels absolutely surreal."

Danielle: "I'd really not known much about the sport of racing at all until myself and TJ got together. It was then I started to learn more about the sport and his great passion for not only Formula One as a whole but the passion that he also has for Fernando.

"There is a little bit of a story behind attending my first Formula One race. Close to the end of 2023, I got the idea that TJ was planning on proposing sometime in the coming year.

"Without his knowledge, I went ahead and purchased some Formula One Canadian Grand Prix tickets as a surprise for him coming off the engagement. He proposed on 8 February. On 14 February, I was able to give him these surprise tickets. Complete and total shock is the only way to describe his priceless reaction.

"When the weekend came, we suited up in our rain gear for a wild Canadian weekend at the track. It did not disappoint. Fernando finished on the podium! Engagement presents don't get much better than that."

Fernando wouldn't give up, so there's no way that I am.
Stacie Summerfield, 35, Staffordshire

"I have supported Fernando since 2006. I support him because he never gives up, whether he's fighting for a win, a podium, or 16th. He gives it everything, and you always know with him that it isn't over until it is over.

"My favourite off-track memory of Fernando is meeting him. To come face-to-face with your hero is a feeling that can't be described. My favourite on-track memory is his podium in Brazil 2023; Fernando gave it everything until the line, showing again how you should never ever give up.

"His determination is something that inspires me in my everyday life. If I face a difficult situation, I always think to myself, 'Fernando wouldn't give up, so there's no way that I am.'

"Fernando has been my hero since I was 18 years old and will continue to be my hero for the rest of my life."


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