Fernando Alonso is remaining optimistic for the remainder of the season, despite Ferrari’s recent lack of pace in qualifying. Once again the Scuderia struggled in qualifying, finishing an uncompetitive 9th and 10th. In the race, however, Fernando Alonso scythed through the field to finish a strong 2nd behind Championship rival Sebastian Vettel.
Throughout the majority of the season, Ferrari have been unable to excel during qualifying on a regular basis with Felipe Massa securing their best starting position of 2nd at the Malaysian Grand Prix earlier in the season. Since the Bahrain Grand Prix, Fernando Alonso alone has failed to qualify any higher than 5th. However, the Spaniard has undoubtedly excelled when it has counted during the races. Apart from the Malaysian Grand Prix, he has finished in the points at every race so far including two races victories at China and Spain.
Although Ferrari seems unable to match the tremendous qualifying pace of the likes of Mercedes and Red Bull, Fernando Alonso is remaining optimistic as he strives to catch Sebastian Vettel at the front in the Drivers’ Championship. After Sebastian Vettel’s sudden uprising towards the end of last season when the sport returned to Asia, Fernando Alonso is confident that if such successes can be achieved by Ferrari then the Spaniard will have a perfect chance to deny the German is fourth successive title.
“Well, we need to improve the qualifying performance but to be honest, I’m doing what I can.” Explained Fernando Alonso, “In a way, it’s not that the races are good and the qualifyings are bad, it’s just the way it is and we are extracting the maximum from the car all the time. In the races there are more aspects, not pure performance of the car. There is the strategy, the management of the tyres, the characteristics of the cars and on that aspect, I think we are very strong.
“In the pure performance of the car, we are maybe lacking some performance compared to the others but as I said, I’m extremely happy with the performance we are achieving on Saturday and also on Sunday and the championship is open and we have the best example last year. I was leading with 41 points ahead of Sebastian [Vettel] after the Monza race and I arrived in Texas 15 points behind, so things can change very quickly. Our hopes are to keep developing, to keep improving performance and try to repeat what happened last year the other way around.”
Despite Fernando Alonso’s optimism that he and Ferrari can still launch a Championship surge during the later half of the season, the Scuderia will most likely struggle. Unlike last season when Sebastian Vettel had the fastest all-round car on the grid which enabled him to secure strong qualifying results, Fernando Alonso only has roughly the third fastest all-round car on the grid which will unquestionably make catching Sebastian Vettel a tall order as Formula 1 prepares to bid farewell to Europe in two weeks time.
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