Peter Windsor Picks His Faster Driver Between Alonso and Kimi


The present day generation, it ought to be said, is a bit different to the yesteryears that featured, if not more, then three mega world champions on the grid. Their names- Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen.

Alas, only one of them remains on the grid to this day- the double world champion from the Renault stable who is currently driving for the now-popular Aston Martin team: Fernando Alonso.

While the present day stars of Formula 1 are able to manoeuvre their way around testing circuits with much needed aid of technically advanced cars and pathbreaking technology, racing in the yesteryears, you could say, was more about instinct and raw skill; not aided or supported by tech so much.

Maybe that’s just one of the reasons why someone like a Kimi going head to head against an Alonso at Spa or Monza or Suzuka even made all the difference and racing and pure racing an intrinsic part of the sport.

Interestingly, while Raikkonen’s career ended in 2021, Alonso, post his 2018 hiatus, has soldiered on ever since marking a return to the grid in the 2021 Formula 1 season. Much like Kimi, the Spaniard would remain off circuits for two long years. Although, now he is racing in roaring fashion and seems the only man able to really challenge the authority of Max Verstappen, if so on a few occasions such as Canada, Monaco and the likes.

But back in the day, these two titans of Motorsport made our day going head to head for the McLaren and Renault and later, Ferrari and McLaren outfits, respectively.

Alonso, as it eventually panned out, would break Kimi’s record for the most race starts; currently, he is sitting pretty with 372 to his name.

Now when recently asked as to who among Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso was the quicker but at the peak of his powers, the following is what Peter Windsor, widely respected F1 pundit had to say:

“If a number of my friends/engineer mates/authorities were asked that question, they would all say: ‘If you could combine Kimi’s talent with Fernando’s talent, you would have the perfect racing driver.’

“Because here you have this guy that was virtually unbeatable over one lap, absolutely brilliant; and there’s Fernando, who wasn’t so good around one lap but could drive anything anywhere and on a Sunday there was nobody better. He could bring the car home, could live with all the variables and maximise them.”

If you’re talking about the fastest racing driver out of those two, I would say Kimi Raikkonen; if you’re saying the driver who, over a full race season in a car which 50 per cent of the time has front or rear wing damage, Fernando Alonso.

“Kimi was a very good racing driver too. I shouldn’t sell him short – he was a very good racing driver and we shouldn’t just think he was a quick qualifier – and Fernando obviously has his moments as a qualifier as well. You asked the question ‘quicker’ and I would say Kimi. Shoot me down in flames. I’m a massive Fernando fan, I’d hate for anybody to think that I wasn’t.”

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