Two-time Formula 1 champion Fernando Alonso might be tapping into another motorsport in the near future, as Qatari rally driver Nasser Al-Attiyah revealed the Spaniard wants to test his Toyota Helix next month.
Even before retiring from F1 at the end of 2018, Alonso already started diversifying his portfolio. In 2017, he took the Monaco Grand Prix off to participate in the Indy 500 (which he led for a little bit before his car broke down). Last year, he took part in and won the 24 Hours of Le Mans with Toyota as well, and according to Al-Attiyah, the Spaniard is not experimenting yet, as he could dabble into rallying now.
"Fernando is a very good friend of mine and we have talked these weeks," Al-Attiyah told Autosport.
"He told me that he wanted to test my car and I told him to let me finish Dakar and then we would talk to make it happen.
"We are talking between him, me and Jesus [Calleja] - who is another great friend.
"We are both Gazoo Racing drivers, but I still do not know if Toyota will want to get involved in the test. The idea is to do it before the Qatar Rally, or just after."
Al-Attiyah is a big favourite to win the Dakar this year in his Toyota Helix (with that oh-so-sweet-sounding V8), with Carlos Sainz (Senior) expected to challenge him in his Mini.
Back in September, Alonso talked down a potential Dakar attempt, as he said he doesn't think he has the talent level required.
"I need to consider and evaluate [several options] but there are things I need to be honest and know that I don't have the talent to do," he said back then.
"I need to be honest with myself, and need to know where my limits are, and I don't have the talent to do that."
Maybe he's changed his mind since then? Or does he just want to test Al-Attiyah's Toyota for fun? We doubt it...