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Alonso still right up there with Hamilton and Vettel - Vergne

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Former Toro Rosso driver Jean-Eric Vergne is convinced Fernando Alonso would be winning races if he was driving a Mercedes or a Ferrari.

The current leader of the Formula E series pretty much states the obvious regarding the Spaniard but argues his case.

"When you have the same engine as a team that wins races, and you’re also behind Toro Rosso with Honda, this should be a concern," said the Frenchman, alluding to McLaren.

"I think McLaren has huge pressure. Fernando told me that the team is preparing a lot of new parts for Barcelona, which would also be good for Stoffel Vandoorne.

"I think if he was at Mercedes or Ferrari, he would win races. He is in no way inferior to Vettel or Hamilton."

Vergne also offered his two cents on Red Bull's Max Verstappen, believing the Dutchman is just too often on the ragged edge and needs to calm down.

"Max is a unique driver who is very talented and takes a lot of risks," he added.

"Previously he was lucky, because he managed to pull off moves that are one in a hundred. Only now it’s not working.

"If he calms down a little and focuses on the main thing – finishing the races – he will be where he should be, which is in the leaders’ group. But now he is making too many mistakes that can be avoided."

Vergne concluded his career in F1 after three years with Toro Rosso, and has no ambitions of ever returning to the pinnacle of motorsport having found refuge in Formula E and in the WEC, much to his satisfaction.

"I don’t regret leaving Formula 1," said Vergne who also worked as a Ferrari test driver.

"Even if I was invited to return, as happened with Brendon Hartley, I doubt that I would accept it. What does Hartley have? A contract for one, two years maximum. What will he do then?

"I’m much more attracted by the opportunity of competing in two championships at the same time."

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