Spanish F1 driver Fernando Alonso says his win at the 2005 French Grand Prix is one of his favourite memories as it was crucial in helping both him and Renault secure both the Drivers' and Constructor's championships.
Back in 2005, Alonso was locked in a fierce battle with McLaren's Kimi Raikkonen for the 2005 title. With Ferrari and Michael Schumacher struggling for form, F1 was on the brink of a tectonic shift with a new generation of drivers finally being able to showcase their talent. In the end, Alonso would go on to win the title comfortably, with that season's French Grand Prix proving to be key.
"The win in 2005 at Magny-Cours was good for obvious reasons," Alonso said on Alpine's official preview for the 2021 French Grand Prix.
"We led the race from the start, and I was able to pit and come out still ahead of everyone. It was my fifth and Renault's sixth win of the season and that momentum we carried through the rest of the year was pivotal in taking both championships."
Alonso though was cautious about his prospect for the weekend, stating that he didn't know the Paul Ricard that well.
"Circuit Paul Ricard is actually a track I don’t know so well as I’ve only raced here once in Formula 1," Alonso explained.
"The track has been resurfaced with some small tweaks to help improve the racing, so we’ll assess that early in the weekend. The circuit has quite a few high-speed sections and Turn 10 will be fun in these modern Formula 1 cars.
"There are quite a few runoff areas around the circuit which means any mistakes are less likely to punished by barriers either side of you. This will be different to what we experienced at both Monaco and Baku and hopefully, we can put on a show for the fans."
Alonso is currently 11th in the 2021 Drivers' Championship having scored a total of 13 points from the first six races of the season.