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Formula 1

Alonso to drive Alpine F1 car in Le Mans demo

by Matt Beer
1 min read

Fernando Alonso will demonstrate an Alpine Formula 1 car at Le Mans ahead of the 24-hour race this weekend.

It is believed to be the first time in the modern era that an F1 car has run on the full 8.5-mile track used for the centrepiece of the World Endurance Championship.

The demonstration run is likely to use an older Renault F1 chassis carrying Alpine livery rather than the current car, although the F1 testing restrictions do allow for teams to conduct two ‘demonstration’ events using this year’s car or the previous year’s. These must not exceed 15km and must use specially manufactured tyres.

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Alonso’s drive will form part of an Alpine parade shortly before the start of the 2021 24 Hours on Saturday.

Alpine has been rumoured to be joining the growing list of manufacturers committing to the new Le Mans regulations, and news of the parade event strengthens suggestions that it will make an announcement this weekend.

The brand currently competes in the WEC’s top class using an adapted Rebellion LMP1 car rebadged as an Alpine A480 and run by the Signatech team, but this arrangement is only permitted for the current season.

Alpine WEC Monza

Peugeot, Ferrari, Porsche and Audi have already announced they will be joining the Hypercar class in either 2022 or 2023, taking on WEC stalwart Toyota.

Alonso won Le Mans twice during his season with the Toyota LMP1 team.

F1 does have history at Le Mans, as its shorter Bugatti circuit was used for the 1967 French Grand Prix.

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