Fernando Alonso explains the real reasons for quitting Formula One

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When it comes to motorsport, there is no denying that Formula One is still the pinnacle of the sport.

And when it comes to Formula One, you are always going to get debates about which driver is the best on the grid and who is the greatest of all time.

Despite the fact that he has been struggling in one of the worst McLaren F1 cars in history, it is still widely accepted that Fernando Alonso is not only one of the best drivers on the grid today, but one of the best drivers to ever step into a Formula 1 car.

During his long and illustrious F1 career, the 37-year-old Spaniard managed to get his hands on two World Drivers' Championships, when driving for Renault back in 2005 and 2006, although many believe he should have won many more.

Now, after 17 years at the top of the sport, Alonso has decided that the time is right to move away from Formula 1 and focus the twilight years of his racing career driving in other categories of the sport.

There are many people who feel that Alonso is still far too talented to leave F1, suggesting that the only reason he is quitting is because he can't get a seat in one of the top teams, something which the racing star has now denied.

Discussing his real reasons for leaving, he said: "No, I could have had a competitive car [next year] -- I'm not stopping because I don't have a competitive car.

"I've been saying the same thing since August: I'm stopping because I did everything I wanted in Formula One.

"I arrived in Formula One, I won Grands Prix in Formula One, I won world championships in Formula One, I break records in Formula One. I drove for McLaren, for Renault, for Ferrari -- I am 37 years old, and I cannot do more in Formula One.

Fernando Alonso to win the Mexican GP (2,000/1)*

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"All the things that I dreamt of in Formula One are done. There are new things in motorsport that are bigger than Formula One. From August, it's been the same thing: 'It's a shame, and Formula One should look that Fernando has to stop and so on....

"There's the truth and there is your opinion, the general opinion. I stop because I want, not because I've been forced to stop."

It seems that Alonso will now set his sights on getting a drive for an Indycar team so that he can win the Indy 500, adding to his 24 Hour Le Mans and Monaco Grand Prix victories, making him only the second person in history to win the Triple Crown of motorsport.

Whatever he does decide to do with the rest of his racing career, there is no denying that Fernando Alonso is going to be a huge loss to Formula One, but we wish him all the best.

*Odds subject to change, 18+, www.begambleaware.org

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