A broken jaw will not stop Fernando Alonso from making his grand prix comeback as scheduled.
Even as rumours swirled about super-sub Nico Hulkenberg being put on stand-by at Alpine, including time in the team’s simulator in England, Alonso has made things clear.
“Thanks for all your wishes, I’m ok and looking forward to getting 2021 underway,” he tweeted.
Alonso became the latest high-profile victim of a cycling crash when he collided with a car turning into a parking lot in Lugarno in Switzerland.
Alex Zanardi has still not recovered from a smash that left him in a coma while MotoGP world champion Nicky Hayden was killed in a bicycle crash in 2017.
The Alonso crash left him with predictable cuts and bruises, but worse news came when doctors discovered a crack to his upper jaw that required surgery.
According to Alpine, the new name for the Renault F1 team, “after a few days of complete rest” Alonso will be able to “progressively resume training”.
The bottom line from Alpine is that the two-time world champion is expected to be “fully operational to undertake preparation for the season”.
The deadline for Alonso is March 12, when pre-season testing begins in Bahrain, although the first race – also in Bahrain after the postponement of the Australian Grand Prix until November – is March 28.
An investigation by Lugano police said that a 42-year-old motorist collided with Alonso “while making a left-turn manoeuvre to enter a supermarket parking lot”.
Without naming him, police said “a 39-year-old Spanish citizen, who was riding his bicycle (and) he was passing the column of stationary vehicles in the opposite direction to the right. The collision occurred against the right side of the car.”
Despite the injury, Alonso’s tweet shows four biceps curls in a sign of strength and ends with the words “Let’s gooooooooooooooo”.