F1 Lewis Hamilton snubbed as Fernando Alonso names his greatest rival

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Fernando Alonso has named who he believes is his greatest rival from his long Formula One career – and somewhat surprisingly it’s not Sir Lewis Hamilton.

Being the most experienced driver in F1 history, Alonso has raced against many fantastic drivers over the years, and he himself is considered to be one of the best with two titles and 32 wins to his name.

His list of opponents includes fellow world champions Jacque Villeneuve, Mika Hakkinen, Michael Schumacher, Sebastian Vettel, Nico Rosberg and Max Verstappen.

And he has also had several title winners as teammates while at McLaren and Ferrari, namely Hamilton, Kimi Raikkonen and Jenson Button.

The Spaniard may only have been teammates with the British sporting legend, then a rookie, for the 2007 season but their rivalry was intense and the atmosphere at McLaren became very toxic.

They are friends now though and have a lot more respect for each other, with Mercedes man Hamilton frequently referring to Alonso as the best he’s raced against.

Alonso, now of Aston Martin, had someone else in mind though when asked about his greatest F1 rival, telling Bang & Olufsen: ‘It is difficult to pick one because they were all great rivals and very talented drivers as well.

‘When I came to this sport, Michael Schumacher was dominating the races and everything, probably that fight with him would still be the one I would choose.

‘Fighting against Michael was very special, so I would say that.’

Alonso and Renault ended Schumacher and Ferrari’s five-year dominance of F1 in 2005 and battled against the legendary German to retain the title the following year.

Though he is now 41, Alonso still has ambitions of winning a third title and has started this season in great form, finishing third in each of the opening three grand prix.

Discussing the favourite moments from his career, he added: ‘All the memories from different teams are very linked with the results I got in that moment.

‘For Ferrari, I will pick the first race I won. Aston Martin, obviously I will pick [Bahrain] where we got the podium, and from Renault I will pick the championship.

‘The biggest one was the first championship, always the first championship. The second was obviously emotional, but the first one was like a dream come true, and a life goal.

‘I always believe it’s possible, that’s why I keep racing. The challenge is big, you know that you need to overcome some difficulties and some top teams who are at the top of the sport.

‘But I race every day and I train every day thinking that the third title is possible.’

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