Fernando Alonso sees no hope for Silverstone

After Barcelona, ​​Fernando Alonso demanded of the team: deliver more, talk less. A week later, things didn’t really go any better for the Asturian at the Austrian GP – P15 in qualifying, P18 in the race. As they would say on the stock market: the trend is not currently his friend. Alonso and Aston Martin cannot find a way out of the crisis. Not even points for the fastest lap there was.

Fernando Alonso: Aston Martin has no chance in Formula 1 with or without penalty

“I can answer your questions for after the Silverstone qualifying straight away,” said Fernando Alonso, who only had gallows humor after finishing 15th in the sprint and qualifying on Saturday. “I expected it, and Silverstone will be just like that.” The AMR 23 and high-speed corners – that’s complicated.

Aston Martin driver Lance Stroll
Lance Stroll was the better Aston Martin driver apart from qualifying and the race in Austria, Photo: LAT Images

Already on Saturday, according to Murphy’s Law, everything went wrong in Austria: Starting from P13 and with almost no chance, the two-time world champion was pushed off the track in the uphill hairpin by Nico Hülkenberg, who was later penalized for it. For Fernando Alonso, it made no difference: “I don’t really have anything to say about it when we’re fighting for P16 with two laps to go.”

A day later in the Styrian mountains – a similar situation. This time on lap 20, this time it was Fernando Alonso who received the penalty after he braked too late in turn three and sent Zhou Guanyu off the track. “That was my mistake,” the Asturian said after the Grand Prix, taking the blame.

“I didn’t expect my brakes to lock up. Then it’s almost like accelerating because the car doesn’t slow down anymore,” said the Aston Martin driver. In addition, he didn’t expect the cars in front of him to brake so early and wanted to do the same as Daniel Ricciardo, who had overtaken Zhou shortly before.

Not successful – Alonso cleared Zhou. However, he was not particularly bothered by the resulting 10-second penalty. “That didn’t change the result, we weren’t in the points anyway,” explains the Asturian. The poor pace of the AMR 23 on the track came as no surprise to the veteran, and the attempted Hail Mary with an alternative 3-stop strategy did not bring the desired success.

In the end, Alonso saw the checkered flag one lap behind in P18. Aside from Lando Norris’s retirement, only Logan Sargeant was behind him. Not even the fastest lap of the race, 25 thousandths faster than Verstappen, was a consolation – outside of the top 10, there are no extra points for that.

“If you’re not fast enough, 71 laps is a very long race,” said Alonso resignedly. The balance was a little better than in the sprint, which served as a test run, but not good enough. “We’re definitely not fast enough, not competitive enough!” Parallels to the Spanish GP a week ago became apparent, where none of the cars scored points either.

Fernando Alonso loses patience: Ask someone else about car performance

Alonso still has no interest in performance issues, as he made clear on Thursday. “I drive the car,” he said, referring to team boss Mike Krack or performance director Tom McCullough. Qualifying in particular is currently the Achilles heel of the AMR 23. “It was better in race trim, but when you start from the back, tire management is almost impossible and you always fall behind.”

“We need to qualify better, we need more pace,” says Alonso. There is one good thing about the Aston Martin crossroads: the direction of development is becoming clearer and clearer. Because: “The more difficult races we have, the more clear answers we get.” He and Lance Stroll will have to be patient a little longer, however: the next major update package will not be announced until after the triple-header.

Fernando Alonso is one of the losers of the Austrian GP, ​​as are Lando Norris and Max Verstappen. You can find all the winners and losers from Spielberg in this article.

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