Friday, July 19, 2024

Italian Grand Prix ‘Very Difficult’ and ‘Most Physically Challenging’ Race of the Year – Alonso

Fernando Alonso could only finish ninth in the Italian Grand Prix, with the veteran Spaniard admitting it was a difficult and physically challenging race at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza.

The Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula 1 Team driver was unable to show the same kind of pace he has been able to at other points during the 2023 FIA Formula 1 World Championship season, and he was left to battle for the minor points placings rather than the podium.

Alonso had hoped to gain a place thanks to a time penalty for Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team’s Lewis Hamilton, but once the Briton had overtaken Williams Racing’s Alexander Albon, that chance of eighth place had gone.

“It was a very difficult race today and it was one of the most physically challenging of the year,” said Alonso.  “We will take many lessons from this weekend and look to be better next time.

“I had some hope we might be able to catch Lewis [Hamilton] when he had the penalty, but as soon as he passed Alex [Albon] I knew it would be difficult.”

The result, combined with Carlos Sainz Jr. and Charles Leclerc finishing third and fourth means Aston Martin have slipped behind Scuderia Ferrari in the Constructors’ Championship, but Alonso hopes the team can bounce back and regain third place between now and the end of the season.

“Ferrari has unfortunately jumped us in the Constructors’ Championship after this result, so we need to bounce back at the next race,” Alonso added.  “There are still a lot of races and points left in the Championship.”

“The car didn’t have the pace we needed today” – Lance Stroll

Team-mate Lance Stroll was not a top ten contender throughout the race at Monza, with the Canadian finished down in sixteenth, ahead only of the two MoneyGram Haas F1 Team drivers.

Stroll admitted the pace of the AMR23 was not great throughout the weekend, and even trying a one-stop strategy did not bring him into the battle for points, and he hopes for better and a stronger weekend in Singapore in two weeks time.

“The car didn’t have the pace we needed today, so it was a tough race to manage,” said Stroll.  “We tried to do something slightly different with the strategy and only stopped once, but the tyres were falling off towards the end of the stint, so I wasn’t able to hold position.

“It’s been a difficult weekend for us, so we have some work to do before we head to Singapore in a couple of weeks.”

Lance Stroll had a weekend to forget in Italy – Credit: Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula 1 Team