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Alonso confident Alpine 'in mix' as F1's new 'fight-for-third' looms

Alonso confident Alpine 'in mix' as F1's new 'fight-for-third' looms


Alonso confident Alpine 'in mix' as F1's new 'fight-for-third' looms

Alonso confident Alpine 'in mix' as F1's new 'fight-for-third' looms

Fernando Alonso is confident Alpine is firmly in the hunt this season as Formula 1 embarks on its latest bitter battle for third in the constructors' championship.

Last season the balance of power in F1's midfield changed on almost a weekly basis as McLaren, Renault and Racing Point all showed strengths at different circuits.

This year McLaren again appear strong, Ferrari has made a recovery with its power unit, and while Aston Martin has been affected by the new regulations, it is expected to find form.

With AlphaTauri also on the pace, Alonso believes there will be an ebb and flow across the five teams every weekend.

Alonso, who unfortunately retired on his return debut with Alpine in Bahrain on Sunday said: “I think it is going to be very, very close in the midfield.

"A couple of weekends I think it is going to be better for some teams. Maybe the next weekend you have a better layout for different teams than the week before. So I think we will be in that mix.

“I am optimistic that we can have a good season, especially at some weekends I am sure it will play into our favour."

In qualifying for the season opener, Alonso dragged his Alpine A521 into a top-10 grid slot whilst team-mate Esteban Ocon failed to escape Q1.

During the race, Alonso was able to battle with two of his former employers McLaren and Ferrari before a sandwich wrapper got caught in the rear brake duct of his car and forced the Spaniard to retire.

Despite the unfortunate circumstance, the 39-year-old Spaniard believes he saw enough to suggest he and Alpine can have a strong season.

“I was happy to race so close to the McLarens in the first stint, in front of one Ferrari and behind the other one," added Alonso. "I felt competitive in that group.

“I saw in qualifying [Charles] Leclerc was six-tenths [of a second] in front of us but in the race, we were in that mix in the first stint.

“I think there are positives to take from the race and I think we have to be confident that we will have some good weekends before later.”


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