Third place and a race to be experienced. Saturday in Jeddah gave another great satisfaction to the Spanish rider, who knows he has a great opportunity in his hands to repeat the podium in Bahrain and confirm his surprise at the start of the championship.
Thanks to the problem experienced in Q2 by Max Verstappen and the penalty remedied by Charles Leclerc, in fact, tomorrow that third slot will turn into a front row, bringing the two-time world champion back to second position exactly as happened in Canada in 2022.
A great satisfaction on which the qualifying behind the Monegasque’s Ferrari did not weigh too much, because the goal was to maximize the car’s potential by trying to beat Sainz and the two Mercedes, in order to secure a good position on the grid. departure for the race.
“Yes, of course (I’m happy). It has been a very positive weekend for us. Qualifying was our weak point in Bahrain,” explained Alonso, referring to the gap accused of Sakhir over the flying lap.
“But today the car seemed to work very well in qualifying too. And yes, let’s see tomorrow what we can do from here. Obviously Charles has a penalty. We will therefore start from the front row of the grid, which is really fantastic.”
The high drag, with the relative shortcomings in terms of top speed on the straights, weighed so much that it had a gap of about 8 km/h from the Ferrari on the starting straight, but the good load characteristics of the ARM23 have rewarded in the corners, allowing Alonso to beat Sainz and the two W14s.
Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin AMR23
Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images
“I’m very happy, there were some question marks coming to a new circuit, if the car will behave as well as in Bahrain, but for now only positive sensations. The car is easy to drive, let’s try to score many points tomorrow, I’m optimistic for the race. The start will be important, but the race pace will count even more”.
With the awareness that he has a car on his side that, up to now, has shown that it can express itself better in the race than in qualifying, the Spaniard is looking forward to Sunday with confidence, with the podium indicated as the great desire of the weekend.
“Yes, we are confident, I think yesterday’s gap or, let’s say, the long run was a bit influenced by the traffic. Our performance on Sunday should be better than on Saturday, so starting from the front row is a good feeling,” added the Aston Martin driver.
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