Fernando Alonso hopes his luck will turn after scoring only two points in the opening two races of 2022 even though the Alpine has been one of the quicker cars on the grid.
The Spaniard finished only one of those races as a failure forced him to DNF late on in Saudi Arabia, but despite that there are reasons to be optimistic for Alpine.
They are currently fourth in the Constructors’ Championship and have so far proven themselves capable of consistently challenging for points.
Alonso believed he had “two great weekends” and that the team’s natural position is to finish races fifth or sixth.
“I think I had two great races,” Alonso told Motorsport.com.
“One in Bahrain, but unfortunately with the wrong strategy maybe with the starting tyre, starting on a scrubbed and then that compromised my whole race, and with an engine also that was not great in Bahrain.
“And in Saudi Arabia I think I was very fast in qualifying, very unlucky because some other people didn’t have new tyres in Q3 and the scrubbed set was the fastest unfortunately.
That’s P4 in the Championship, and a ✨ 𝙨𝙥𝙞𝙘𝙮 ✨on track battle to match.#SaudiArabianGP @alo_oficial @oconesteban pic.twitter.com/042xbzAOhA
— BWT Alpine F1 Team (@AlpineF1Team) March 27, 2022
“So we had to overtake [some] cars and go back to our natural position, which was I think P5 or P6. Another retirement, so it’s disappointing to have only two points after two great weekends.”
The two-time former World Champion also said he believed the car’s pace was “a little better than what the results say”.
“We gifted some points to the people behind us,” he said.
“It’s a long way, luck will turn around and hopefully we will receive some of these gifts in the future.
“I’m happy with the performance but, as I said, we lost points. I think I could be P6 or P7 in the championship, to be honest, and I’m not in that position and it’s not because we don’t deserve it. It is just because we didn’t maximise the points.”
Despite his optimism, Alonso was unwilling to say the Alpine car was the third fastest on the grid behind Ferrari and Red Bull.
“The Alfa Romeo seems a little bit faster in some places, the Haas was very fast in Bahrain. And [George] Russell was okay [in Saudi Arabia] but not outstanding. So we are there, and now it’s up to us to make some progress,” said Alonso.
“Maybe we are not the third fastest, but it seems we could be consistent and without the DNF we could have done sixth and seventh.
“So that would have put us on a good level of points and, as I said, there is still a long way to go, but at the moment I felt fast on track.”
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