Fernando Alonso: F1 races ‘more emotional’ since announcing retirement

(CNN)Now that his Formula One career is coming to an end, Fernando Alonso admits he’s starting to get a little sentimental.

The 37-year-old Spaniard announced in August he was leaving F1 after 17 years in the sport.

And with the clock ticking to the season’s last race in Abu Dhabi on 25 November, Alonso is trying to savor every moment.

“I’ve found myself recording the parade laps in the last couple of races with my phone,” the double world champion tells CNN Sport’s Amanda Davies.

“I’ve never done that in my life, but now it’s like I want to record everything.”

“I want to have that last memory of each race.”

Alonso won two world titles with Renault in 2005 and 2006 and has amassed 32 wins, 22 pole positions and 97 podiums so far in his illustrious career.

Letting go of the sport is proving difficult.

“From August, when I decided to announce the retirement, every single race has been a little more emotional than normal,” he says.

“Every driver’s parade, every fan session has been a little bit different … it gets even more difficult.”

Alonso made his F1 debut for Minardi in 2001 before joining Renault as a test driver in 2002.

The Spaniard’s 2005 title ended Michael Schumacher’s five-year reign and made him then the youngest world champion in F1 history at the age of 24 years and 59 days. He retained his title the following year.

Alonso endured a tumultuous and often acrimonious season alongside Lewis Hamilton at McLaren in 2007 before a brief return to Renault followed by a four-year stint with Ferrari from 2010. He joined McLaren in 2015.

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