Interesting interview from Fernando Alonso who has cooled any pole position talk for Ferrari says he expects either McLaren or Red Bull to be challenging for the pole on the opening race day of the season. The funny ol’ thing about Formula 1 is you never really know the truth about anything in the lead up to the first Grand Prix of the season. Testing is often a game of smoke and mirrors with no team ever revealing their real hand.
I personally think the Ferrari looked very strong in qualifying and with a number of upgrades already planned (as mentioned here) then it leads me to believe they are in a strong position this year, no matter what Alonso says.
McLarens totally dominated last years Australian Grand Prix but during Winter testing this year things didn’t appear so smoothly.
Here are a few quick snippets of what Alonso said and I will link to the full interview below also…
This year we should be on the podium. There is no reason to believe that this will not happen in the first race
This quote was in reference to that fact that last year Ferrari were 1.6 seconds slower than the pole time set by Hamilton but they still finished the race in 4th place.
But it’s clear that a Red Bull or McLaren should win
Alonso seems to think that out of the sparring during testing that McLaren and Red Bull are in the best shape. I’m not going to argue with a F1 world champion but during testing it appeared out of all the teams McLaren had the most difficulty in understanding the tyres.
We don’t ask for half a second in front of everybody but two tenths behind everybody will be okay
You have to love the confidence and trust Alonso has in his own ability. He trust’s his ability to not have the fastest car but still win races and championships. After last year when Ferrari were unbelievably off the pace for him to do what he done… well again, I’m not going to argue.
Read the full interview here