Fernando Alonso, McLaren, Singapore, 2018

Alonso: Seventh a “small win” for McLaren

2018 Singapore Grand Prix

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Fernando Alonso has described his seventh place finish in the Singapore Grand Prix as a “small win” for McLaren after hailing the team’s strategy.

Alonso took advantage of having freedom of tyre compound choice after starting from 11th on the grid to finish in seventh, behind the two Mercedes, Ferraris and Red Bulls.

“Really happy with seventh. Normally something happens in front of us, but today all top six cars finished the race so seventh is a small win for us,” says Alonso. “We executed the race to perfection today. Good strategy, good tyre selection and good points.”

Alonso says having the freedom of which tyre compounds to choose for the race was critical to achieving McLaren’s best finish since the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

“We maximised the tyre advantage, starting on the Ultra Softs and then on the Softs,” he says.

“I think the car was behaving very good and we are seventh, behind the top six, so a small win for us and a lot of points for the team and happy for that. Eventually we were the fastest car on track at some point, so that makes me happy at this difficult circuit.”

After some difficult weekends for McLaren, Alonso believes that the team’s performance will continue to vary over the rest of the season.

“I think the car is exactly the same as previous,” he says. “I think it’s just the track characteristics that are better for our package.

“I think it’s going to be up-and-down for the remaining races. Some of the races we may be competitive, some others maybe not so much. The target will be to keep scoring points on Sundays and help the team in the constructors’ championship.”

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Dieter Rencken
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  • 34 comments on “Alonso: Seventh a “small win” for McLaren”

    1. DOTD. Also, the last driver to remain on the lead-lap till the chequered flag. The only driver outside the top-3 teams who managed to stay on the lead-lap till the end.

      1. Yes, reminds me of hungary 2017, also a great race in recent times for alonso, got 6th and best of the rest and the last car on the lead lap, with a great overtake on sainz, who had a very similar car in performance, while no one of the top cars overtook each other.

    2. Magnussen set the fastest lap

      1. He’s been in a tailspin ever since he criticized Alonso on Monza. Had a terrible start there and this weekend just as bad.

    3. 8th in driver’s championship, 3 points away from 7th, with that dog of a car and lots of retirements. Time to remark that now because it will be highly unlikely to keep that position at the end of the season.

    4. Such a shame Alonso’s story.
      If only he had come back to Mclaren around 2013/14, Before they completely lost their way.
      I hear Honda won’t give him engines in Indycars, so just imagine how he’s managed to burn not just bridges, roads too.

      1. I hear Honda won’t give him engines in Indycars

        Where did you hear that?

      2. Alonso has always been brilliant at Singapore. Even in 2008 after the second safety car he pulled away from Hamilton with a vastly inferior car.

        1. Memorable win that one, can’t be praised enough

          1. Much like Hamilton’s performance in the “Liegate” incident, eh?

          2. Remember Remember, 28th of September, Flavio, Treason and Plot

          3. Gosh, everywhere I can see you two guys nagging about 2008 Singapore.

            1. @peking901 what’s wrong with that? It’s fun

            2. There is no reason why Singapore treason should ever be forgot

    5. Alonso what are you doing going to Indy? Really, might as well just go drive go karts. F1 needs you still to show them young ones how it is done, #1 if F1B today.

      Maybe there is a family angle, want to live in states? Then pull a Hammy and have your stuff in LA or a Michael Andretti and commute by private jet.

      1. Hamilton – nails his qualy, nails the race, wins and has a dominant position in the drivers championship. Alonso – nails his qualy, nails the race and finishes 7th, has a slim chance of finishing 7th in drivers championship (at best). That’s why he’s going to Indy. There’s only so many years a hyper competitive driver can spend fighting for 7th places. He wants to win and there’s no way it’s gonna happen in F1 anytime soon, might as well use what time he has left in his career to chase other goals.

        1. I’m pretty sure Alonso will be back in 2020 – there is some stuff happening behind the scenes I guess, which explains the delay in Alonso making an announcement abbout next year. He himself admitted he could be back ‘coz he has unfinished business here.

    6. Speaking of Alonso, I just had a chat with somebody from Andretti Autosport who told me that they have a verbal agreement with Alonso to drive for them next year but that Honda are reluctant to supply him an engine partly because of his criticisms in F1 & also because of him racing for Toyota in the WEC.

      There now exploring the possibility of AA supplying Harding Racing with a chassis & staff to run Alonso under McLaren branding with a Chevrolet engine.
      Should they end up having to go that route there also looking at the possibility of running Stoffel Vandoorne in a 2nd car for at least Indy should he be unable to find an F1 race seat. This is going to be Dependant on backing.

      1. Harding is apparently already running Andretti dampers, they were on hand for the rookie test for either O’Ward or Herta (or both I guess) per Marshall Pruett working on the setup. If there was any question if Alonso will have a competitive car, O’Ward a rookie put the Harding car 5th overall. It still seems odd that either Honda or Chevy or more importantly the rest of the teams would be OK with Andretti basically running both engines. I would think it would be hugely beneficial to understand the strengths and weaknesses of each engine for set up, but that seems to be the way things are going.

        Having Vandoorne in the 2nd car getting crushed by Alonso in another series just seems cruel. I hadn’t heard that.

      2. Personally i hope he runs the Chevy-Ilmor engine and not the Honda.
        If Honda is refusing to supply him an engine, it’s all for the best and I think the feeling is mutual.
        I’d love to see him win the Indy 500 in a Chevy especially considering Honda failed him at that race in 2017.
        Indy car will move mountains to get him a seat so I’m not concerned about him not being in Indy car if he wants.

    7. It’s nice to see Nando scoring points, but this entire season has been a waste from McLaren. I remember Alonso saying Australia was going to be their weakest race, and yet as things turned out, it was arguably their strongest. They took a car that could have competed for podiums around this time if upgraded aggressively, and put it on the same level as Sauber and Toro Rosso.

      Embarrassing, really embarrassing…

    8. This year ALO could also win the “small WDC”, he’s only 3 points behind HUL for 7th. And the gods themselves would not make a top six with a McL this year.

    9. So the car is a dog, deadline last in several races but now in the Points.
      Fairy dust?

    10. “Small win”.
      Indeed, a class B win!

    11. I know many people can’t stand Alonso for various reasons, but it kind of cruel to see him praise a 7th place finish like it’s a win. Especially when pretty average drivers, like Bottas or Raikonen (at least in 2018), get to drive top cars and offer very little entertainment while at it.

      1. I know he’s made his own bed and burned too many bridges along the way, but still it’s a bit of a shame to go out of F1 like that.

        1. I hate this “Alonso burned bridges” stuff.
          That’s not the reason he hasn’t got a good car.
          The reason is : the good seats are taken by drivers, not teams, who wouldn’t accept him there.

          Daniel Ricciardo is the nicest guy in the world and couldn’t get a deal with Ferrari or Mercedes either. Did he burned bridges with them too?

          1. +1….Finally, someone who understands the F1 game!

      2. You say Raikkonen has been average this year yet he’s having the best season in his second tenure with Ferrari. What does that make of his from from 2014-17?

        1. Fikri Harish (@)
          17th September 2018, 4:20

          Disastrously awful? I mean, Alonso literally scored three times as many points as Raikkonen in 2014. Three times.
          And Vettel scored almost twice as many points as Raikkonen in 2015.
          You say this is Raikkonen’s best season in his second tenure with Ferrari and yet while his teammate, who himself hasn’t been having that great of a year, is still locked in a battle for the title, Raikkonen still hasn’t been able to win a race, let alone battling for the championship, in the same car.

          He was really good in the Lotus but Raikkonen has been little more than a deadweight for Ferrari.

        2. @forzamaldonado What I meant was that these drivers were not average their entire career

    12. Best driver on the grid! Shame to see him walk away just coz he can’t get a competitive drive. I would rather have a divisive Alonso than Raikonnen or Bottas just to keep teammates happy. I mean Hamilton atleast gets the job done. Vettel should instantly be replaced with Alonso if Ferrari dream of winning WDC in the next 2 years or so..sadly not gonna happen! #bebrave

    13. Name 3 drivers that would smoke Hamilton, if they were in Ferrari this year:
      Alonso, Riccardo, Verstappen

      And remember, Lewis is an exellent driver.

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