Alonso: We definitely need to find more performance in qualifying

Alonso: We definitely need to find more performance in qualifying

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Fernando Alonso, Stoffel Vandoorne
photo: Steven Tee/McLaren

A dramatic British Grand Prix in front of the team’s home fans saw McLaren add a further three points to its tally. Both drivers Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne narrowly avoided the first-lap incidents, although Fernando suffered minor damage to his sidepod and floor after a knock. Both of them ran an aggressive strategy and fought hard, Alonso making his way through the pack to finish in P8 after the team took the opportunity to pit both drivers under the second Safety Car.

“It was a great race, and a great show for the fans with a couple of Safety Cars that always mix things up”, Alonso commented.

“In a normal race, eighth would be great, but with the Safety Car and the yellow [Soft] tyres we decided to put on – and the others who didn’t pit – we had a clear tyre advantage at the end of the race, but couldn’t capitalise on that because we were stuck behind traffic.”

Kevin [Magnussen] pushed us off the track at Turn Seven, and without that, I think we could have probably been fighting with Esteban [Ocon] and Nico [Hulkenberg] for P6. However, no penalty was given so we had to fight back, and overtook Kevin on the last lap.”

“We have more points for the team, which is great, but hopefully we can reach that position in the future thanks only to our own performance.”

“Saturday seems to be the lowest point of our weekend in terms of performance, but then on Sundays, we are in the same group as Renault, Force India and Haas, so we definitely need to find more performance in qualifying.”

Alonso: We definitely need to find more performance in qualifying

The team could only do limited work on Vandoorne’s car during parc fermé conditions after a difficult day on Saturday. He drove a solid race despite poor balance and difficult handling to bring the car home in 12th position.

“It was a very tough race for us, difficult to close up the gap with some of the competitors in front, and disappointing not to come home with points. From the start, I had the same feeling in the car [as on Saturday], so the conditions out there were really tricky”, Vandoorne said.

“On the positive side, the pace was probably a bit better [in the race]. We were able to stay with some of the points-scoring cars like the Force India and the Renault, and were more or less matching their pace.”

“The team looked over everything to try to find the cause of the issues we were having, but obviously in parc fermé, you can’t really change anything unless you want to start from the pit-lane. It’s been a tough triple-header, everyone is a bit tired at the end of these three races, so the mechanics deserve a good break. I’m sure they’ll check over everything and we’ll turn up in better shape in Germany.”

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