Fernando Alonso has said his test for McLaren in Bahrain next week does not necessarily mean he is eyeing up a comeback to Formula 1 next season.
The two-time World Champion is using the second MCL34 to do some Pirelli tyre testing, fuelling speculation once again that he is using his ambassador role to weigh up whether to end his retirement.
But, nothing has changed as far as Alonso is concerned and he will only come back to Formula 1 if a “great opportunity” came his way.
“As I said last year, and in Barcelona as well, my idea is not to come back,” Alonso said in Bahrain.
“When I said bye bye last year, it was because this chapter is already complete and I achieved in F1 a lot more than what I dreamt of.
“I had great opportunities outside F1 to do things that are unprecedented, so that is why I took the decision.
“Coming back is not in the plan but if something happened and a great opportunity arrived, I would consider. I don’t close doors 100 percent to anything in the future.”
Alongside the MCL34, we'll be running a test car for Pirelli at the #BahrainGP in-season test. Here's our line-up. ⬇️#MCL34
📅 Tues- Carlos AM Lando PM
📅 Weds- Lando@pirellisport
📅 Tues- Fernando
📅 Weds- Carlos AM Fernando PM pic.twitter.com/Rnat905fhi
— McLaren (@McLarenF1) March 28, 2019
Alonso also said his other racing commitments means he is not really missing the Formula 1 life.
“Honestly I’m not missing [F1] too much at the moment as I’ve been very busy,” he added.
“Maybe if I was relaxing at home maybe it was different but I have been testing and preparing different things so there is not much time to miss anything.
“I think the team decided this was the best moment and not taking time from the race drivers to develop the car.
“On Pirelli it’s more about testing the tyres and maybe [I will] have a little bit of an idea of what the car is doing this year and being involved a little bit from last year in the development in the car is useful for the team so I hope it’s a productive test.”