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Why Alonso "could not relax" at Dutch GP

Why Alonso "could not relax" at Dutch GP

Why Alonso "could not relax" at Dutch GP

Why Alonso "could not relax" at Dutch GP
Ian Parkes & Ewan Gale

Fernando Alonso has suggested he "could not relax" during 70 laps of qualifying at the Dutch Grand Prix.

The Alpine driver failed to make the top 10 in Saturday's qualifying session but was able to use clever strategy from his team to finish sixth at Zandvoort.

The circuit layout boasts little in the way of a straight-line, providing drivers with no time to rest from the high-speed twists and turns between the sand dunes.

Addressing his race, Alonso said: "It was good. It was for sure 70 laps of qualifying.

"We could not relax at any point. The start was good but I lost places around the outside so I had to fight very hard to recover some.

"Then we put on the hard, we tried hard to make that middle stint work and when we thought we had a relaxed race at the end with fresher tyres, the safety car came and we had to fight all the last 12 laps. It was a very demanding race for sure.

"It was one of the best for sure."

Zandvoort "hard to overtake" around

With such a premium on overtaking opportunities, organisers extended the DRS zone down the start-finish straight around to the entry to the final, 18-degree banked corner.

Alonso made light work of those ahead of him but conceded: "It was hard to overtake, especially for Lando [Norris] because I think they lack a bit of straight-line speed.

"For me it was a bit easier. With the AlphaTauris, we were able to pass them on track.

"We pitted early for the hards to get clear air in front of us and it was working quite fine. Then I had, obviously, a new set of softs because we didn't get to Q3 and everything was looking good.

"Then the last safety car, people pitted for fresher tyres so we put ourselves into some difficulties there, trying to manage and keep the position. But we did.

"With Carlos [Sainz's] penalty, P6 at the end is really good."

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