Alonso not ruling out Formula One return

Fernando Alonso may be set to walk away from Formula One after this weekend's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, but the two-time champion is not ruling out returning to the sport.

Alonso will step away from F1 after 18 seasons in the paddock to pursue other interests within motorsport, mainly completing the triple crown by winning the Indy 500.

The Spaniard will also continue competing in the World Endurance Championship in 2019, but he could potentially answer a call from any interested F1 parties in the future should he miss the sport.

"Right now it's difficult to think about coming back but the door is not closed," he told a media conference on Thursday.

"The first reason is I don't know how I will feel next year. I've been doing this for my whole life. Maybe next year, by April or May, I am desperate, on the sofa, so you know, maybe I'll find a way to somehow come back. 

"But it's not the initial idea. It's more about myself. If I come back it's not for any particular reason or something that has to happen, it's more how I feel in the middle of next year.

"I don't know what the future will bring. Definitely now, I'm concentrating on the personal challenges, the triple crown and some other races that I will add next year.

"For 2020 I don't know exactly what I will do, or what will be the plan. Further away, it's impossible to think – but yeah, who knows? Life is long and beautiful.

"I like Formula One. I will always love Formula One, so if I will be here in the future as a driver, as a father, as an FIA boss or whatever. I will think."

Alonso's best result in Abu Dhabi was second place in 2011 and 2012, but in recent years he has only scraped into the top 10.

He expects more of the same on an emotional weekend.

"It's going to be special, emotional, and hopefully a good one," he told a media conference.

"[But] I know we are not competitive enough to fight for big things but, nevertheless, I think we are fighting with [Racing Point] Force India for the constructors' championship, so that will be nice to succeed on that and finish in front of them."

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