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Fernando Alonso will be the most significant prospect in the paddock come 2025 after his current contract with Aston Martin expires. But first, the two-time Formula One World Champion must decide if he wants to remain on the grid. Alonso, speaking ahead of this weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix, suggested future contract talks are irrelevant if he decides to retire.

“I need to decide if I want to keep racing,” Alonso said, according to Sports Illustrated. “I feel great now, but it’s a demanding calendar.”

The 42-year-old noted the demands on drivers are intense, particularly now with a 24-race schedule. If he does continue racing beyond 2024, he wants “to be sure” he can commit “100 percent of (his) time,” he told

“Let’s see first of all if I want to commit for the future,” Alonso said.

He added his “first priority” will be remaining with Aston Martin, noting he feels confident entering the year.

“But let’s see — I’m very open,” he said.

Alonso is fully aware his prospects for 2025 could be lucrative. With Max Verstappen at Red Bull and Lewis Hamilton’s surprising move to Ferrari, he’s likely to be the only World Champion “free of contract,” he said.

Lewis Hamilton on the track in the United Arab Emirates
Lewis Hamilton in the United Arab Emirates | Amin Mohammad Jamali via Getty Images

Alonso’s contract prospects also received a boost from his results of last season, his best in a decade. The 2005 and 2006 champion earned eight podiums in 22 races, including three runner-up finishes at Monaco, Canada and Netherlands. Alonso last racked up similar figures with Ferrari in 2013 and placed second in the driver’s championship.

Alonso said he’s in a “good position to negotiate” for a 2025 contract. But those thoughts will apparently remain on the backburner for now.

“I want to at least do the first couple of races without thinking too much,” he said.

There is certainly speculation Alonso could make the move to Mercedes, should Alonso be offered a contract, to effectively replace Hamilton. But with Alonso’s recent comments, that is likely to remain speculation for the first several months of the season while he decides on his future — and if that is on the grid or not.

“I’m probably attractive to other teams, the performance that they saw last year, the commitment,” Alonso said. “And as I said, there are only three world champions on the grid, and there is only one available.”

Alonso’s 2024 campaign begins at Bahrain this weekend where he will look to repeat his impressive start to the 2023 season. Alonso earned six podiums in the first eight races.