Hill on Alonso: I think he will retire when he is 44

Hill on Alonso: "I think he will retire when he is 44"

11 August - 19:14 Last update: 20:04

Damon Hill hung up his helmet in 1999 at the age of 39 after 22 victories in Formula 1. He felt he was finished in the premier class of motor sport, but how different is it with Fernando Alonso. Hill says he admires the achievements of the Spaniard.

"I always had it in my mind that racing drivers should stop before they’re 40," Hill interjects in the F1 Nation Podcast. The 1996 world champion says it may have had something to do with his father continuing to race until the age of 45. "I think possibly because my dad kept racing until he was 45. And I remember journalists saying “you know he really ought to stop now, it’s looking a bit sad and long in the tooth and stuff” and he was trying to build his own team up So that might of resitered with me as a kind of negative."

Hill states that at the time of stopping, he was twenty years older than some of the talents racing in Formula One at the time. "I don’t know about you but I always thought that if I was going to be invited to a party and the kids were 20 years younger than me I would feel a little bit uncomfortable. So i started to doubt whether or not I should be hanging out with the kids in Formula One aged 40. That was one of my ways of dealing with it. I don’t know maybe that’s the wrong way of doing looking at it," says the Briton.

Alonso knows no stopping

Alonso, however, has a very different take on it. The 41-year-old Madrid native recently signed a multi-year contract with Aston Martin. He is still full of energy and fire. "Fernando is firing on all cylinders and looking very strong and incredible and of course remember that Fangio didn’t start in Formula One until he was about 38 and he went on until he was way into mid 40s and at a time where it was extremely dangerous so he must of had nerves of steel and incredible skill as obviously we know. Which is the same as Fernando Alonso." Fangio eventually won five more world titles.

Hill sees Alonso lasting several more years in Formula One." I think it’s down to whether you love it or not and you’ve got enough energy and you keep yourself in good shape, then why not, why not keep going so Fernando could go til he was lets say 40-. Im going to pick a number, when is he going to retire? I think he will retire when he is 44.”

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