Ferrari: Alonso rues ‘bad luck’ after retiring

2011 Canadian GP team review

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Both Ferrari drivers were unhappy after the Canadian Grand Prix.

Fernando AlonsoFelipe Massa
Qualifying position23
Qualifying time comparison (Q3)1’13.199 (-0.018)1’13.217
Race position6
Pit stops34

Ferrari drivers’ lap times throughout the race (in seconds):

Fernando Alonso139.168126.647125.172125.23298.12197.01395.948103.3127.511128.343127.364121.78594.79794.22394.98295.076110.03995.932119.412113.439108.588105.88123.339137.16141.27126.322122.962122.573122.626121.163121.963122.057120.03395.448110.345
Felipe Massa140.805126.228125.135124.65197.88396.9296.269103.706127.003128.386127.712121.39495.04594.60294.95195.10895.2994.23499.805108.574120.035118.936131.512136.547140.31126.765124.313121.83123.43120.97122.01122.429121.22194.391106.957108.452115.213125.09124.42292.01491.32590.57190.57589.6988.75689.52188.04187.5288.42490.835101.817123.37592.22383.52685.089103.468100.54992.81118.2488.01583.02681.88881.37682.38380.72181.57679.14881.15179.919
Fernando Alonso, Felipe Massa, Montreal, 2011

Fernando Alonso

Alonso was quickest in the disrupted second practice session. He snatched second on the grid from his team mate at the end of qualifying by less than two hundredths of a second.

He made a concerted effort to pass Sebastian Vettel at the start of the race, but after that dropped back from the Red Bull.

Alonso took the plunge and switched to intermediate tyres on lap 17, while Massa did not. Although he picked off Nick Heidfeld on his first lap out of the pits, two laps later he was back in for wets as the rain returned.

When the race resumed after the two-hour interruption, Alonso was down in ninth.

He pitted for intermediates again on lap 36, losing more time having to queue behind his team mate, and came out in front of Jenson Button.

Button went down the inside of him at turn three and the pair banged wheels, sending Alonso spinning onto a kerb where his Ferrari became stuck, ending his race.

Afterwards he said: “it’s a real shame because today we really had a good race pace but we were unlucky: that’s not a feeling I have, it’s a fact”.

Fernando Alonso 2011 form guide

Felipe Massa

Out-qualified by Alonso again but was much closer than usual.

He kept pace with Alonso at the start of the race as well, lapping within a second of him.

Massa did not pit for intermediate tyres early on, but did take a second set of wets which dropped him behind Kamui Kobayashi.

Repeated attempts to pass the Sauber finally bore fruit on lap 51. But Michael Schumacher got past them both, leaving Massa in third.

He pitted for slicks on the next lap but spun the car on his out-lap, damaging his front wing and having to pit again.

Now down in 12th, Massa worked his way up into the points. In the final six laps he passed Jaime Alguersuari and Nico Rosberg to take seventh.

Accelerating out of the final corner he used his DRS to beat Kobayashi to the line by 0.045s to claim sixth. Even so, he was unhappy with the result:

“I can’t draw much satisfaction from this sixth place, given the potential we had here.

“My chances of finishing on the podium and also of fighting for the win given how things went, just evaporated when I was passing [Narain] Karthikeyan . He was going very slowly on the dry line but then, as I was passing him on the wet, he accelerated and I lost control of the car ending up in the wall.

“Thanks to the next safety car, I was able to catch up to the pack and then, in the end, I passed a few cars to get as high as sixth. I am angry, there is no point denying it”.

Felipe Massa 2011 form guide

2011 Canadian Grand Prix

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    62 comments on “Ferrari: Alonso rues ‘bad luck’ after retiring”

    1. Alonso and Massa were pretty unlucky with their racing incidents. I would have been great see either or both of them racing alongside Schumacher, Button and Webber for the podium.

      1. Yeah, they drove excellent races.
        I feel especially bad for Massa, as it could’ve been the highlight of his season so far.

        On a side note: I think the Montreal circuit owners should definitely consider making changes to the high curb Alonso was stuck on. There shouldn’t be curbs like that in such part of a corner.

        1. It probably wouldn’t have been an issue in a dry race, I just think so much water had been pushed off the track onto the grass it was like a bog and his wheels just sank.

    2. Alonso took the plunge and switched to intermediate tyres on lap 17, while Massa did not.

      It’s clear Ferrari thought stopping was the best stratgey as they did so with Alonso, and I’m happy that they were wrong.

      1. I’m not! :-D

      2. Actually, I think it was because Alonso seems to have more confidence on the intermediate tyres than the wet tyres. I read somewhere that he would’ve started the race on inters if possible.

      3. They may have also pitted Alonso as an opportunity to free up Massa who seemed more comfortable on the full wets and faster than Alonso.

        1. When Alonso pitted, Massa was clearly faster, too.

      4. sid_prasher (@)
        14th June 2011, 19:15

        I think Massa was probably a bit quicker in the first stint…

    3. Lol! Did the sound of Narain’s car scare Massa and force him to blip the throttle on the wet line, lose control and hit the wall? The guy should quit racing. He is just a bag of excuses.

      1. He was on the wet side of the road, you know? on cold slicks… with a noobish HRT driver still on the dry line… when he’s supposed to let the other car go.

        1. No he’s not supposed to let the other car go. He’s just supposed to keep out of its way, which he did. It’s not Narains fault Massa got a bit too right foot happy for the conditions.

          1. Yes, he is suppossed to let the other car go. That’s called blue flag.

        2. The rules (International Sporting Code Appendix H, article only require drivers shown the blue flag to allow the approaching car to pass – it does not say anything about pulling off-line:

          The flag should normally be shown to a car about to be lapped and, when shown, the driver concerned must allow the following car to pass at the earliest opportunity.

          Karthikeyan did not obstruct Massa, he did nothing wrong.

          1. I believe the unwritten rule is that you stay on your line to let the faster driver pass you.

      2. If any of the two should quit it’s Karthikeyan.

      3. OMG! Narain was in the wrong place and you think Massa needs to retire…

      4. Dumb/troll comment.

        1. Dar4Ferrari (@)
          15th June 2011, 21:11

          given what massa has recovered from it’s a bit eccentric to suggest he should retire…however if he wasn’t so willing to play second fiddle to alonso ferrari wouldn’t accept his performances so far this year…but he was closer to alonso in qualy and quicker in race pace while FA was on track this weekend

    4. Now I understand where the fuss about lapped acrs comes from. Massa had to go on the damp part of the track to lap Karthikeyan, thus crashing. It would be even common sense by the back-marker to get out of the way and let the others race, as he is going to get lapped anyway.

      1. Karthikeyan was recovering from an incident just before.

        1. Wherever that incident was, in the replay you could see he was on track in the corner before the incident. He should’ve seen the Ferrari and pulled over in the wet.

          1. I think you guys are being quite unfair to Narian… He’s trying to make a race for himself as well… Yeah sure it wasn’t his best moment, but it was a long way from the silliest thing a driver has done this weekend.

            1. He did nothing wrong, but as he had to let Massa through he could have pulled to the right rather than forcing Massa to do so.

      2. 100% agreed. Massa basicly had 3 options:

        1)Brake hard and overtake the HRT in the following corner
        2)Try to pass on the left, extremely close to the wall, where it was drier
        3)try to pass on the right, where there was space, but horribly slippery

        Option 2 wasn´t really an option as it would be too tight. Neither was option 1 as he’d lose valuable time. So option 3 it was, which turned out to be too dangerous. In hindsight option 2 would have been the best, which is wrong, because a car being lapped should never force a lapping car to slow down. Felipe was very unlucky, and the incident cost him a very likely podium.

        1. a car being lapped should never force a lapping car to slow down.

          I think the anti-blue flag guys would have something to say about that.

          Massa didn’t really have much of a choice, and it just happens he got it wrong. I don’t think anyone is at fault, it was just one of those things.

        2. I think Massa underestimated just how slow the HRT was out of the previous corner.

          Karthikeyan didn’t break any rules, but it would be nice for him, or other backmarkers, to have the sense to give the dry line to the leaders.

          1. Karthikeyan didn’t break any rules, but it would be nice for him, or other backmarkers, to have the sense to give the dry line to the leaders.


      3. Yeah, it was Massa’s fault. Quite silly. Considering strong pace.

    5. Real shame because on paper Ferrari had the best race pace in dry conditions in FP2.

      Even so they were well positioned to grab a podium for sure – even a win was not out of sight with the track drying up towards the end.

      I seriously don’t know why Alonso took the gamble of intermediates on lap 17 because pretty much everybody knew the rain was coming. They couldn’t have thought they would pass their way up and count on the monsoon and the SC to stop the race and change back to wets. Bad strategic blunder again.

      But it wasn’t fatal, because as we know Button did the same and still went on to a guaranteed podium.

      Massa fusioned bad timing and an own error during the lapping of Karthikeyan. That was fatal from a podium-point of view, but he could even consider himself lucky, he didn’t crashed out altogether when he was a mere passenger in his car for a couple of seconds.

      I expect them to show no mercy in Valencia.

      1. Intermediates on 17th was a childish mistake, but calling both drivers to pits at the same time later on and having FA waiting for Felipe’s change was even worse. And JB deliverately t-boning him LH style was the icing. A horrid weekend for FA but no fault of his own.

        1. As for the pit in the same lap, I’m not sure if that wasn’t the best solution. Maybe Alonso would have lost more time with another lap on the wets. (Well, in hindsight we know it could have spared him from a DNF, but anyway..)

          But yes, maybe the call on inters was the team’s decision, and Fernando was not at fault. It wasn’t that important anyway.

          And yes, he definitely wasn’t at fault in the collision with Jenson.

          So all in all it all went wrong – who knows if he had won in dry conditions. Maybe in Valencia he succeeds.

          1. Lots of Alonso defending here – but isn’t it the case that he should have stayed in the car when he spun out as he could have got a push start given that he was in an unsafe position. It would have saved a safety car and also his race. I’m sure I remember Schumacher exploiting his knowledge of the rules by doing that in the past. I think MB may have suggested that in commentary too.

            1. yes i thought this but he did sit there for a moment and no one went near him so perhaps race control said no.

              i have always wondered about this rule, if you are in an unsafe position you get a push start…ok fair enough but to get that push start you need to drag the marshals into an equally unsafe position. That makes no sense to me.

        2. Except JB didn’t deliberately T-bone anyone, but otherwise agreed.

          1. Probably not intentionally.. but Alonso always seems to get the raw end of all the race incidents with Jenson. Last year in Austarlia Jenson spun Fernando around. This year at Australia again he unintentionally almost pushed Alonso onto the grass and made him lose 4 positions or so, and then again in Canada he takes him out of the race. Its incredibly frustrating to watch Fernando go out like that, as I was sure that whatever Jenson did in the race yesterday, Alonso would have done better.

        3. JB deliverately t-boning

          That’s not how Ferrari themselves saw it, nor the stewards… take another look Button ahead front wing and tyres, before Alonso was exceptional late on the brakes, fair play on cold tyres, Button realised and braked hard but under steered off the kerb into Alonso who by this time was again ahead (rear to front with Button) but there was know where for Button to go… racing incident, it doesn’t matter how many times you look at it, and that was the decision.
          Shame I would of like to of seen what Alonso could of done on the slicks.

        4. Im pretty certain if thats how Fernando saw then he would have been very vocal about it. And just like in Australia 2010, hes kept quiet, so Im inclined to believe that he perceved that as a racing incident as well.

          1. Agreed on both counts. Alonso’s lack of complaint regarding the incident spoke volumes, and he was extremely late on the brakes after JB was beside him. If you watch the onboard from Alonso’s car, it almost sounds like he gets back on the throttle in an effort to squirt ahead to grab the inside line at the second part of the chicane. All in all, very unfortunate for us as he would have been a player toward the end of the race.

    6. In my opinion, like in Monaco, again they made the stupid mistake of allowing the drivers to change tires during red flag. I truly don’t understand that rule, as the cars are suposed to be in “parc ferme”. When the red flag was shown, KOB had 1 pit stop and Massa 2. When they allowed them to change tires, Massa`s advantage dissapeared instantly.
      In any case, I was very well impressed with Ferrari’s pace. Alonso and Massa were very strong the whole weekend and that could be a good sign for the rest of the season.

      1. No they’re in parc ferme conditions from the start of qualifying to the start of the race. After the race starts, you can do whatever you want. Teams don’t, because it takes up too much time.

        1. Hairs, thanks for the info…

          1. The rules says that they can do any changes in the car, considering that it doesn’t affect the race progress. I can’t recall which paragraph it would be now.

    7. I like watching ferrari not doing well. Haha!

      1. And we like watching Lewis make rookie mistakes, race after race after race :)

    8. Interesting to see Alonso so philosophical after being punted out. He could have won this thing, and it’s extra salt in the would to see the driver who punted him take the win. I also think it’s ironic that Alonso was once penalized for hitting a McLaren and only injuring himself. Now he get’s taken out by one and it’s a “racing incident.”

      1. Both Ferraris could have won, taking into account their pace as the track was getting dry. Bad luck day for them.

      2. thats a fair point, malayasia was only a racing incidents, even more so infact.

    9. Whilst I’m sure the quotes are correct does anybody else find it difficult to picture Massa saying his chances ‘evaporated’…?

      1. I pity the fool, who spins off trying to get past an HRT!

    10. Think the red cars definitely lacked a bit of luck on the race, but didn’t really seem to help themselves. Massa’s wall incident was amateurish, Alonso’s coming together with Button very avoidable regardless of blame. Weekend to forget.

    11. So bizarre to see Alonso beached how he was. Very odd. I don’t think Massa should be too disheartened, he beat Alonso! He also made for a thrilling finish between himself and Kobayashi.

    12. Advice to Massa: When on slicks never go for the wet part..wait wait wait. there was a tiny thin line of dry and Kart was on it. He could not move, could not Massa boy. YOU should have waited a few seconds.
      BTW..don’t try to take back a position by getting into the marbles either.

    13. Their race pace was quite good. Massa also did well. What a bad luck. I think they would little hasten.

    14. UKfanatic (@)
      14th June 2011, 0:07

      in this last 2 years Ferrari has had some races to forget after great quallys, we still dont know how far could they have gone in dry conditions or even on this wet race, button made a great race but who knows what alonso could have made in such conditions. Massa proved again to be disasterous a good sign for Ferrari is that When Massas pace is quick they know that they are very strong probably strong enough to win, just like when button is close to Ham we know that Ham has the pace to win.

    15. Its not every day you see Massa drive fast. Nice try. Pitty it wasnt enough.

    16. If I was Massa I should have had punched the steward for allowing HRT in the race,he drove well & I wish better result in the near future,that last duo between him & Koba was great.

      1. And the Virgins and the Lotus as well then, that finished behind the HRTs…

    17. Khartikeyan was actually quite decent this weekend, only a tenth off Liuzzi in quali and would’ve finished 14th were it not for a time penalty for cutting a chicane.
      There is one dry line, Massa knew that. He’d have gotten passed the HRT soon enough, hell he probably could have gotten past on the line he did take since the HRT was slow, Massa just put on a tad too much throttle too early, nobody to blame but himself.
      Same for Alonso. Button had the run on him and was level with him in the braking zone, Alonso should have yielded, he knew there wasn’t space for two cars there but decide to try and scare Jenson off and hope he made his car disappear, with disastrous results for both, Alonso out, Button limping back to the pits with a puncture. To call this incident Jenson punting him off is ludicrous.

    18. Pity about Massa. Thought he was going to get a podium, if not a win perhaps. At least this’ll be a confidence boost though, his performance all weekend was fantastic.

    19. a slow driver hobbled Massa’s race..
      hmm monaco anyone?

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