Fernando Alonso, Alpine, Sochi Autodrom, 2021

Alonso targets consistency after “one of my best races” since comeback at Sochi

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In the round-up: Fernando Alonso says his drive to sixth place in Russia, where he looked set for a podium finish at one stage, was his best performance since he returned to Formula 1.

In brief

Alonso aiming for consistency

Having scored points in all bar one of the last 10 races – missing out at Spa where he finished 11th in a race which was cut to just a single lap behind the Safety Car – Alonso wants more over the final seven races of the season.

“I think Sochi was possibly one of my best races this year,” he said. “The car was competitive during the race and the battles with the Ferraris, McLarens and Red Bulls were very exciting towards the end. In just a few laps we were climbing a number of places.”

Alonso identified two other strong performances so far this season. “Sprint qualifying in Silverstone was also fun and so was Hungary for obvious reasons,” he said. “We’ve had some good races this year and importantly we’ve been consistent. We need to keep up this consistency and score more points for the team to finish the season on a high.”

This weekend’s race will be his first at Istanbul Park since 2011, when he took his fourth podium at the track with third place. He has never failed to score at the venue.

Alonso soaked up pressure from Schumacher in 2006
“I have some nice memories of the Turkish Grand Prix,” said the Alpine driver. “It’s a circuit with a good mix of high-speed corners and overtaking opportunities. Turn eight is a unique challenge and I look forward to tackling this corner in a modern-day Formula 1 car.

“I had a fun battle with Michael [Schumacher] there in 2006. He was right behind my gearbox exiting the final corner on the last lap. That was just one of a number of on track battles we had that season.”

Saudi Arabia reveals track progress

The Saudi Arabian Grand Prix promoter has revealed new images of construction work at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit, which is due to hold its first race in December.

Alpine enters WEC’s Hypercar class

Alpine has become the latest manufacturer to confirm it will enter the World Endurance Championship’s Hypercar class with a pair of LMDh cars, beginning in 2024.

“By competing in both Formula 1 and endurance, Alpine will be one of the rare brands to be present in the two key disciplines of motorsport,” said CEO Laurent Rossi. Ferrari has previously announced it intends to return to the category in addition to its F1 effort.

Mercedes F1 staff join INEOS America’s Cup team

Top technical staff from Mercedes’ F1 team including chief technical officer James Allison will help co-owner INEOS develop its yacht to compete in the upcoming America’s Cup race. Geoff Willis, who is part of their Applied Science division, will also serve as technical director on the project. The design team is based at the F1 squad’s headquarters in Brackley.

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Comment of the day

Formula 1’s switch to synthetic fuel will only pay off if the technology has real-world applications, says Dave:

If this has the ability to change to overall market place for ICE fuel, great. But as way of reducing the emissions of the sport it’s over-sold.

The race cars produce a fraction of the emissions attributable to the sport. If we can put this in the aeroplanes and trucks etc… it would be great too.
DaveW (@Dmw)

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On this day in motorsport

  • 30 years ago today Arie Luyendyk won the penultimate round of the CART Indycar season at Nazareth. Bobby Rahal finished second ahead of Michael Andretti, which meant the pair went into the final round as title contenders.

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11 comments on “Alonso targets consistency after “one of my best races” since comeback at Sochi”

  1. Bernie’s criticisms of Liberty’s 23-race schedule are correct, although Liberty is not the first to expand the calendar for commercial reasons. That would be FISA in the mid-1950s. Although one prominent proponent of calendar expansion theory was… …Bernie Ecclestone.

  2. Nell (@imabouttogoham)
    6th October 2021, 3:16

    Bernie would do the same thing.

    Or to those who say he wouldn’t, he’d just drop the races that pay less in order to accommodate those that pay more.

  3. Every single race is one of Alonso’s best races.

    1. Well, I think we have to wait a bit longer for those comments from him but I’m sure they’re coming : ) At this point he just says ‘since his comeback’

    2. @magon4

      I was about to say that!

      I remember when he was at McLaren, he frequently finished towards the back of the field and then said it was the best drive of his life.

      1. @sonnycrockett

        I remember when he was at McLaren, he frequently finished towards the back of the field and then said it was the best drive of his life.

        Yeah, even a downgraded Alpine from last year’s Renault is already offering the opportunity for Alonso to regularly chase (or at least dream of) a podium finish whilst doing his usual “best race of my life” stuff. It hardly could be as bad as it was.

  4. COTD is absolutely right. F1 should further confirm their commitment to sustainability by reducing the number of races they travel to to 18-20 each year, and have a calender arrangement that necessitates the least amount of travel. Maybe even mandate a common arrangement for the transport of the cars like Formula E and Extreme E do.

    1. But you can only show a significant reduction if you first increase the amount of races.

      Also having more races in the Middle East will then reduce travel requirements for cars, drivers, (no) fans, and fuel.

  5. Two months left, but the pit building & other stuff still look quite far from ready, but I’m not worried. For now, at least.
    A street circuit, but seemingly the track isn’t 100% formed from regular roads, although Marina Bay also has a permanent portion (3rd-to-last corner until the opening sequence), so nothing new on this front.

    Whitmarsh participated in America’s Cup post-Mclaren stint, so I immediately recognized the competition title.

    I share COTD’s view. Driving around a circuit indeed only produces little overall versus travelling & transportation.

    1. To me it looks like it will be ready about as much as the Korean track was when we first raced there @jerejj. Sure, there are other buildings closer to it than we had in Korea, but it’s certainly just re-profiling parts of an existing city to become a race track like in Baku or Singapore, for example
      As far as I know all of it is purpose built, even though they probably plan to have some parts of the track used as public roads, maybe even all of them.

      Yeah, I agree with the CotD as well. If it helps find good ways to make those fuels in a reasonable way, able to work with existing harware and ramp up production of them, that will certainly help get much of the existing vehicles operating in a less costly manner for the environment. For the actual cars this won’t make the difference with F1’s emissions, unless they manage to put the Trucks for the European part of the season running on it too! And even then, shipping, flying, operating all the manufacturing processes as well as running all the computers (and off course windtunnels) for designing the cars is a far larger part of the footprint.

  6. Alpine had soon make a road car to cash in on their sport advertising, or will it continue to squander it like Renault did

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