Fernando Alonso, Charles Leclerc, Red Bull Ring, 2018

Points finish “completely unexpected” after pit lane start – Alonso

2018 Austrian Grand Prix

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Fernando Alonso says he was surprised to finish in the points after starting from the pit lane in the Austrian Grand Prix.

The McLaren driver took the chequered flag in eighth place, earning his first points finish since the Spanish Grand Prix.

“Being P8 is completely unexpected starting from the pit lane,” he said after the race.

Alonso spent the first part of the race in a queue behind slower cars.

“At the beginning we were stuck,” he said, “we were not able to even comment anything on the balance of the cars because we were just behind a group of cars.

“In the second part definitely everything played into our hands. There were a lot of blisters on the other cars, we were able to overtake.”

Several drivers struggled with tyre blistering due to the unexpectedly warm conditions. Alonso said it was “not easy” to look after the rubber.

“It was a surprise today with the hotter track temperature the blisters became a problem. We suffered them in the first half with the red [super-soft] tyres so on the yellow [soft] tyres we tried to take care as much as we could at the beginning of the stint.

“But even with that it was difficult to manage and finish the race.”

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Author information

Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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15 comments on “Points finish “completely unexpected” after pit lane start – Alonso”

  1. He stayed back and let the youngsters chew up their tires and then pounced.
    He was in 15th place after 50 laps.
    Another masterpiece.

    1. True. Fernando is a real Maestro ;) Hats off guys…

      1. I think the old saying “Form is temporary, Class is permanent” applies here.

  2. Superb performance from Alonso, more than maximised what was available, very competitive race behind from the pitlane, helped along by the three retirements at the top of the field.

  3. A true masterclass from the master

  4. Sure the the DNFs helped him but that driving towards the end while preserving tyres was just inspiring. Once again Alonso punched above the capabilities of car.

  5. I voted him as driver of the day. He was just brilliant today.

  6. Yup, great performance from Kimoa today

  7. The DOTD.

  8. Alonso once again dragging that poobox kicking and screaming into the points.
    Unbelievable.

  9. On a circuit that really penalises high drag cars I’m surprised that Alonso even had a shot at the points today.

    Superb drive. Tactical race with some great overtakes towards the end.

    Will be a close call between Alonso, Grosjean and Max for DOTW.

    1. @todfod
      I had completely lost sight of Grosjean for DotW, but you’re right. Outqualified a Red Bull and was just half a tenth shy of getting ahead of the other one as well. Contrast that with the race result, where both Haas drivers were lapped by Verstappen. Impressive quali effort and a flawless race as well.

      1. Yes, however you really have to take into account that red bull has a huge difference in their qualifying and race performance, it’s not the first time it happens, but probably more extreme than usual: they were BARELY able to beat both haas in qualifying, then they lapped 1 sec quicker in the race, they were 8 tenths down on mercedes, then in the race they were competitive.

  10. Considering he had to use last years front wing as a replacement, quite remarkable.

  11. Amazing again. Still trying to understand how he ended up in the points, overtaking cars the last 5 laps of the race.

Comments are closed.