Fernando Alonso Tells Johnny Herbert What He Thinks of His Comments

Alonso vs. Herbert showdown 1 photo
Photo: Screenshot from YouTube
Fernando Alonso isn't the most likeable guy. Of course, if you were a Ferrari tiffosi back when he was a driver for the Scuderia or if you're a Spanish Formula One fan, then you have no choice other than to root for the man.
But if you can get past his slightly infatuated ego and his attitude issues, then you might discover a very talented pilot who does all he can to win races and, sometimes, even World Driver Championship titles. And as the saying goes, in order to make an omelet, you need to break a few eggs.

During this year's Australian GP, Alonso did more than that, crashing into the left rear corner of Esteban Gutierrez's car while attempting an overtaking maneuver. Because, you know, that's what drivers who want to get in front do. Was it his fault? Hard to tell. The footage shows him feign an attack on the inside, and then quickly switch to the outside.

It was an aggressive move, that's for sure, but it does look like Gutierrez tried just a little too much to block his pass, just before his wheel got clipped by Alonso's. Well, whoever’s fault it was, Alonso clearly drew the short straw as far as the fallout of the incident is concerned, as he suffered a few broken ribs and pneumothorax. Gutierrez, on the other hand, was perfectly fine.

Now while some commentators expressed relief at the sight of Alonso emerging from his car on his feet, even though the single-seater looked like a pile of trash, others - and we're looking at you, Johnny Herbert - thought this accident was a blessing in disguise and the Spanish driver should take advantage of the situation to make an early retirement.

"We don't see that passion from him to want to drive and push himself to the limit when he is in an F1 car," Herbert said. "The things he says, the things that have happened on track, his qualifying pace, and that error in Australia, to me they say it is time for him to hang up his helmet." If his career as a pundit for Sky Sports doesn't work out, Herbert could cut it as a motivational speaker, no doubt.

Understandably, Alonso didn't take kindly to his comments and while he wasn't allowed to drive during the Bahrain GP due to medical reasons, he did find the time to gatecrash a live broadcast involving ex-F1 driver Johnny Herbert and tell him what he thinks about his comments. "I will not retire. No, I'm world champion. You ended up as a commentator because you're not a true world champion," Alonso told Herbert while the two shook hands.

The 51-year-old former Benetton and Sauber driver (who, indeed, only won three GPs throughout his 12-year career) did his best to come up with a reply, but he couldn't do better than "Thank you very much, that's good. I wasn't world champion. Happy man," all while wearing the fakest of smiles on his face. His co-presenter saved the day by taking over and cutting their intervention short, but that will go down as one of the most memorable live TV moments, no doubt.

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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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