Renault confirms Alonso and Zhou for Abu Dhabi test


The Renault F1 team has confirmed that it will field Fernando Alonso and test driver Guanyu Zhou at the post-season test scheduled at Yas Marina on December 15th.

Renault requested an exemption from the FIA to run Alonso in the one-day test that is intended for rookies and young drivers who have not participated in more than two Grands Prix starts.

The Spaniard's outing will be part of his preparation program ahead of his full-time return to F1 with Renault in 2021. However, several rival teams, and especially McLaren, are unhappy with the FIA's decision to allow Alonso to run in the post-season test.

"We would like to thank the FIA and F1 for their acceptance of our test plans, made in recognition of our commitment to young drivers throughout junior motorsport and to Fernando’s own dedication to furthering the careers of young talents," said Renault F1 team boss Cyril Abiteboul.

"Zhou has experienced the benefit of the Renault Sport Academy, having joined its ranks last year. He has worked hard and made a genuine contribution to the performance of the team through his work in the simulator and test programme. I am delighted he can drive the R.S.20 to complement his journey so far.

"For Fernando this will be the next step in his return. He has worked tirelessly to make sure he is as ready as he possibly can be for 2021. He wants to contribute fully – not just to the team, but to the fans and the sport he has missed in the past two years."

Shanghai-born Zhou is currently eighth in the 2020 FIA Formula 2 Championship, having achieved one win and five podiums in the feeder series this year.

Yesterday, Renault announced that Alonso will reunite with his championship winning R.S.25 during the Abu Dhabi GP weekend, bringing the car "back to life" with a few demo laps around Yas Marina.

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter