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Fernando Alonso gunning for Max Verstappen after ending 10-year drought
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Fernando Alonso gunning for Max Verstappen after ending 10-year drought

Fernando Alonso gunning for Max Verstappen after ending 10-year drought

F1 News

Fernando Alonso gunning for Max Verstappen after ending 10-year drought

Fernando Alonso gunning for Max Verstappen after ending 10-year drought
Ian Parkes & Graham Shaw

Fernando Alonso has vowed to go gunning for Max Verstappen after ending a 10-year wait for a front-row grid slot.

Alpine driver Alonso delivered a stunning qualifying performance to land second on the Canadian Grand Prix grid alongside polesitter Verstappen

It is the first time since the 2012 German Grand Prix, when he took pole position while driving for Ferrari, that the two-time F1 champion will start on the front row.

"It feels great," said Alonso. "It's an unbelievable weekend so far for us.

"We've been competitive in free practice, which normally we are on Friday. But then on Saturday, we seemed to lose a little pace.

"Thanks to the wet conditions [in qualifying] the car was mega. I was so comfortable driving this car and I think the fans also pushed me to make an extra push.

"Starting on the first row is a little bit better than I expected, a much better result than what we were hoping for, but for sure we take it.

"It was a very tricky qualifying, semi-dry but still on inters, and I think we benefit from those conditions."

Alonso to attack Verstappen but also realistic

Asked about how he expected the race to play out, Alonso had that trademark glint in his eye as he said: "Let's see, I think I will attack Max on the first corner...

"The goal is to lead the race on lap one. So that's turn 1, maximum attack.

"And then after that, they can go and they can fight - but it will be nice, sweet to lead the race."

Realistically, Alonso is aware his car lacks the pace to claim a victory, particularly with the forecast set for a dry race.

"I will say that the top five is what we should fight for," assessed Alonso. "We have a very good starting position. But we know our limitations.

"We have seen in many races a Ferrari or Red Bull starting last, or having a puncture on lap one or whatever, and they still finish with a good margin in front of us.

"I think the top four places are locked, so fifth is like a win for us, and that's probably the spot that we should aim for."

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