Sport Alonso felt he and Alpine deserved podium ‘on merit’

02:10  27 september  2021
02:10  27 september  2021 Source:   planetf1.com

Alonso questions F1 chasing unneeded improvements

  Alonso questions F1 chasing unneeded improvements Fernando Alonso says no other sport searches for ways to change its image and format when not necessary like Formula 1 does. © PA Images Fernando Alonso in the paddock at Monza. The Italian Grand Prix saw the second staging of sprint qualifying, a 100km sprint race which sets the grid for the main race rather than the traditional Q1, Q2 and Q3 format. Drivers still contest the original qualifying though, that taking place on Friday instead, determining the sprint qualifying grid.

There is a hint of regret for Fernando Alonso , sixth in Sochi after enjoying the taste of the podium for a few meters. The Spaniard was the author of a beautiful race, but was unable to take full advantage of the arrival of the rain, which favored Carlos Sainz, third at the checkered flag, among all. However, the Asturian champion can be largely satisfied with his performance. “We finished sixth, but I think third place would have been deserved – Alonso said. In the end, only luck counted, as the rain came so late, a bit like throwing a coin. Someone stopped a lap before I was third when it really started raining

Fernando Alonso closes his Russian Grand Prix in sixth place, fifteenth round of the 2021 Formula One World Championship, but the smile is not full at all. Today the Spaniard wanted the first podium of his vintage. The crucial moment, as confirmed by the Asturian, came with the advent of rain. “At that moment I was doing great, I picked up everyone who preceded me and, at a certain point, I even climbed to third position. I really thought my first podium was coming and, if so, it would come for merit , not for the demerits of others.

Fernando Alonso felt a podium finish was possible for him at a frantic Russian Grand Prix, but he ultimately had to settle for P6 on Sunday.

Fernando Alonso drives in the 2021 Russian GP. © PA Images Fernando Alonso drives in the 2021 Russian GP.

Alonso had been running well throughout the race and even found himself in the podium positions at one stage, with cars swapping to intermediate tyres amid a mad scrap taking place behind Lando Norris and Lewis Hamilton.

Having qualified on the third row as well, Alpine and Alonso had been having a positive weekend – but the two-time World Champion felt that a higher finish was available to him at Sochi.

“We finished sixth, but I think third place is more of a true reflection of our finishing position today,” he said in Alpine’s post-race review. “It all came down to luck in the end with the rain coming so late on. It was like a flip of a coin.

Alonso returned to F1 a more ‘complete driver’

  Alonso returned to F1 a more ‘complete driver’ Fernando Alonso believes his time away from Formula 1, competing in other disciplines, means he has returned a more “complete driver”. © PA Images Fernando Alonso in race overalls planetF1 The two-time former F1 World Champion spent 2019 and 2020 participating in endurance racing and events such as the Dakar Rally – and that in particular was a very different experience. Now he is back with the Alpine team, hoping to help propel them to the front of the grid in 2022 when the new Formula 1 regulations kick in with the aim of levelling out the playing field.

Fernando Alonso reflects on his P6 finish at the 2021 Formula 1 Russian Grand Prix and admits at one pont he thought a first podium with Apine was a Fernando Alonso ' felt competitive' in both wet and dry conditions in Sochi qualifying. Fernando Alonso : Red Bull Ring 'challenging' for Alpine package.

He briefly broke down mid-interview. For much of the afternoon he had us on the edge of our seats here in Sochi wondering if he could become the youngest British winner in Formula One. He started on pole, was passed by Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz, who capitalised on the tow offered by the long drag into the first braking zone, and But Hamilton, after a poor start and a mediocre middle from fourth on the grid, was right into his stride and on Norris’ tail as the climax beckoned. The hunted Lando kept his cool. If the rain had hit this Black Sea resort 10 minutes later he would have climbed to the top of the podium .

“Some cars stopped one lap earlier and I was in third position when it really started to rain. It was impossible to predict.

“Nevertheless, sixth is a good result for us and we deserved it. We looked competitive throughout the race, so there are lots of positives to take away.”

He added to the official Formula 1 website: “It’s a good place for the team and the Constructors’ points, but I think today we did a very good race.

“We had amazing pace. We could keep up with Perez in the first stint, and after the first pit stop we did overtake even Verstappen at one point.

“The car was flying today and I think we deserved more. I really thought the first podium was possible today, and on merit, not luck – just by pure pace.”

Check out all the latest Fernando Alonso merchandise on the official Formula 1 store

There were contrasting fortunes on the other side of the garage, however, as Esteban Ocon fell out of the points and could only manage a P14 finish on Sunday.

He was one of several drivers to try and stay out on slick tyres towards the end, and he ended up regretting that decision.

“It was not a good race for us today and, in general, we haven’t had the pace all weekend,” said the Frenchman.

“It’s disappointing, of course, not to score points, especially when there was an opportunity at the end with the wet conditions.

“We didn’t make the right decision at the end and it was a risk to stay out on track on dry tyres. It’s one of those days we have to forget, and we’ll move on, analyse what happened, and come back stronger for the next race.”

‘Top-of-his-game Ocon helped Alonso adapt faster’ .
Returning to F1 after a two-year break, Fernando Alonso says having Esteban Ocon at the "top of his game" was a good reference.Back on the grid with Alpine this season, Alonso had a bit of a slow start, beaten by his team-mate in the first five grands prix of the season.

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