Alonso backs his ability to drive in F1 until the age of 45

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Fernando Alonso said on Thursday that he does not think there will be any issues with racing into his mid-forties and added that he will be the first to admit to Aston Martin if his performance drops off before the end of his new contract.

Alonso has signed a multi-year extension with Aston Martin which will take him to at least 2026, when he will be 45.

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The two-time champion, who has been one of F1's in-form drivers since he joined the team last year, said he sees no reason that his high performance levels will not continue into the new deal.

"Yes, it is true, I will be 45 or more, and keep racing," Alonso said after the deal was announced.

"If one day I feel that I'm not motivated or I feel the race not in good shape or feel I'm not fast... I think I have the relationship with Aston very honest and I will be the first one to raise my hand and say you know I have maybe lost here or there and we will find solutions, but I don't see that coming for the next few years.

"As I said in Japan, probably one of my best races ever happened just five days ago, so I'm feeling good, feeling strong, so I don't feel any problem there.

"Lewis will have 40 years next year in January, so yeah, on this I will not be the only one 40 plus that will talk, maybe there are more drivers."

Alonso, who won F1 titles in 2005 and 2006, had delayed on signing a deal until he decided whether he wanted to continue racing beyond 2024.

The Spaniard said ultimately his passion for racing prompted his decision.

"I will never be 100% sure. But I felt that I love too much driving, that I cannot stop at the moment.

"I think the sacrifices that you have to make are smaller than the joy of driving and the passion that I have for driving. So I breathe Formula One, I live Formula One, I train to be fit to drive Formula One cars, I eat to be fit to drive Formula One cars.

"I will not be happy sitting at home and watching Formula One races, because at the moment, I feel I should still be there, because I can do a little bit better there or I can go faster in this conditions or that conditions. That moment didn't arrive yet."