Fernando Alonso 'hoping to emulate Michael Schumacher'

Fernando Alonso smiles as he prepares for the final qualifying session of the Belgium Grand Prix on August 24, 2013
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Fernando Alonso is hoping to emulate Michael Schumacher by sealing a first world title in his fifth year with the Italian team.

Fernando Alonso has said that he hopes to follow Michael Schumacher's lead by winning his first driver's title with Ferrari in his fifth year with the team, just as the German legend achieved in 2000.

The Spaniard has come close to adding to his two championships – in 2010 and 2012 – when he was narrowly beaten out by Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel, but Alonso believes that, if he and Kimi Raikkonen discover early form this season, then they could be successful.

"Schumacher won in his fifth year with Ferrari, I am in my fifth year now so hopefully I can repeat some of the success he had," ESPN F1 quotes him as saying

"Obviously in the last four years we had some opportunities - in 2010 and 2012 we were very close to winning the championship - so this year we will try again and hopefully it will be a good one.

"If we do well, we will have a very strong team and we can deliver some good results for Ferrari and if we don't do well as a team, some other teams will have a best pair of drivers. It's up to us to deliver and do a good job."

Schumacher won his titles at Ferrari between 2000 and 2004, before finishing second to Alonso's Renault in 2005 and 2006.

Red Bull Racing's German driver Sebastian Vettel kisses the trophy after winning the United States Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit of The Americas on November 17, 2013
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