Fernando Alonso not same as other veteran drivers as Guanyu Zhou details Austria moment

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EXCLUSIVE: Alfa Romeo rookie Guanyu Zhou spoke to Categorical Sport about his relationship with two-time world champion Fernando Alonso.

F1 Preview: A Lap Of The Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

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Alfa Romeo rookie Guanyu Zhou highlighted how Fernando Alonso differs to different drivers on the grid, detailing how the two-time world champion helped him put together for his Components 1 profession whereas he was with Alpine’s F2 staff. Zhou grew up supporting the Spaniard and skilled working alongside him in staff conferences when Alonso returned to F1 for the 2021 season. 

Zhou took up karting as an eight-year-old with huge desires after initially watching a younger, mercurial Alonso star for Renault, the place he gained successive world titles in 2005 and 2006. Now, Zhou – who hails from Shanghai – is hoping to make the same affect early in his profession.

The 22-year-old praised Alonso for his assist in guiding him whereas he was in F2 driving for UNI-Virtuosi Racing. The Spaniard helped put together Zhou for his F1 profession, and he’s grateful after idolising Alonso as a teen. 

“Rising up, I began supporting him within the second race I watched – I didn’t know something about F1 the primary time I watched a race!” Zhou informed Categorical Sport. “I discovered a man whose driving and perspective I preferred, and I’ve been supporting him since then. 

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Fernando Alonso not same as other veteran drivers as Guanyu Zhou details Austria moment

Guanyu Zhou praised Fernando Alonso for the Spaniard’s steering whereas Zhou was in F2 (Picture: GETTY)

“It was nice to be on the identical staff as him, even when I used to be in F2 and he was in F1. I used to be in a position to be taught stuff from him throughout conferences whereas seeing how he performs over radio on observe which was good to know. 

“It was an enormous honour to step into his automobile at FP1 in Austria final 12 months. He gave me a number of info and helped me do the observe stroll, which normally doesn’t occur with skilled drivers as a result of they’ve been across the observe for years and it most likely hasn’t modified since final time! He simply needed me to do effectively and assist me as a younger driver.”

Whereas Zhou and Alonso take pleasure in an excellent relationship off the observe showcased by the veteran’s willingness to assist put together the rookie for all times in F1, the Alfa Romeo star hopes to be aggressive sufficient to battle the 40-year-old icon all through his rookie season. Zhou picked up some extent in his debut race on the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix, ending behind Alonso.

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Fernando Alonso not same as other veteran drivers as Guanyu Zhou details Austria moment

Guanyu Zhou has loved a nice begin to his F1 profession, and secured some extent on his debut in Bahrain (Picture: GETTY)

In consequence, the Alpine star is a single level away from the rookie within the Drivers’ Championship, and Zhou is trying ahead to testing himself in opposition to the previous world champion regularly. Zhou added: “I’ve an enormous quantity of respect for him and it’s a extremely good relationship. 

“This 12 months, we’re having some good fights on the observe as effectively, so I hope that continues.”

The 22-race F1 2022 marketing campaign – which is predicted to return to a document 23 races within the close to future as soon as a Russian Grand Prix substitute is discovered – continues with the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix on April 24.

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