Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin, Miami International Autodrome, 2023

Alonso eager to take fight to Red Bull after Aston Martin’s ‘best race yet’

2023 Miami Grand Prix

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Fernando Alonso says Aston Martin produced their best performance of the season so far in Miami and urged his team to keep up the pressure on Red Bull.

In a race which ran without an interruption from start to finish, Alonso finished just over 20 seconds behind race winner Max Verstappen.

He admitted it’s “going to be difficult” for Aston Martin to close the gap to their rivals, but is hopeful they will make gains over the rest of the season.

“The gap is quite big, even though I think today has been our best race pace yet in the season,” he said. “We finished, I think, closest to the leaders. No Safety Cars, nothing in the race and we’re still quite fast. So let’s see.

“I think the season is going to be long. Hopefully some of the tracks we will be a little bit closer to them and some of the upgrades that we will bring in later in the season maybe put us in a different or more competitive position.”

Aston Martin finished seventh in the constructors’ championship last year but are second after the first five grands prix. Alonso says holding onto that position has to be their priority.

“Our main focus, to be honest, is just looking behind and trying to keep Mercedes and Ferrari in the constructors’ championship under control,” he said. “I think Red Bull, we have to accept they are doing a better job than everyone else and we need to do a better job.”

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However following his fourth third-place finish so far this season Alonso admitted he’s keen to grab any opportunity to finish further up the podium.

“Obviously we want to do one step higher in the podium in P2 and eventually one day we have an opportunity to win a race,” he said. “But at the moment it didn’t happen because Red Bull is better than us, is stronger, is faster and the reliability has been always outstanding for them as well, finishing both cars in every race.

“So if one day there is a crack there, if there is an opportunity, we need to make sure that we are in that position and we’re still not making mistakes at any point in the weekend.”

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2023 Miami Grand Prix

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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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22 comments on “Alonso eager to take fight to Red Bull after Aston Martin’s ‘best race yet’”

  1. FA is the goat of the current grid imo

  2. He is happy that he finished 20 seconds later than a guy who started 7 places behind him.

    That cant be a good sign for the rest of the season….

    1. ollie studio45
      8th May 2023, 2:25

      an improvement is always a positive sign

    2. I would wait untill we see action on the classical track in Europe. Next race all teams bring big updates then we can see more if they are coming close to Red Bull.

  3. I really wonder how the dinner talks in house Stroll go down.
    What Alonso is doing is incredible, but meanwhile Stroll junior is being annihilated.

    1. I have wondered what it must be like in their motorhomes and Astons hospitality areas.
      I can picture Fernando being all hyper, bouncing around with that massive grin, Daddy Lawrence wearing his forced smile, and Lance just staring glumly at the floor. :)

      1. Lance is being Vandoorned.

  4. Unfortunately, they’re too slow for RB.

  5. When Mercedes was dominant in 2014, they still lost three races that season. In theory, it’s possible for Alonso to win. But in practice, I doubt that Red Bull will have issues with both cars. Even in Monaco if Alonso is first, Verstappen and Perez will win on strategy.
    Second place in some race is possible.

    1. Monaco is different as position is king there noone is going to overtake Alonso in Monaco. Only if they split tactics to force him to react on 1 car while the other keep pushing maybe.

      1. requires*

    2. Who knows, maybe leclerc could have some chance in monaco, the red bull is incredibly fast on a straight line, so their advantage might be reduced, and leclerc managed to put it on pole before this year.

      It requires not crashing ofc, but I don’t see alonso getting in front of the red bulls in quali as things are.

      I thought there would be more chance to win for non red bull drivers cause I expected a perez far behind verstappen, but he’s been close lately, obviously with such a dominant car and 2 verstappens the chance to win is very limited, required something happening to both, I was assuming perez would’ve been as slow as the past years and that alonso etc. on a good day could’ve beaten him on pace.

  6. The only possible scenario where this could happen is there is contact and damage to the two Red Bulls fighting one another and Alonso present in third position to capitalise. It has happened before in two dominant Mercedes.

  7. I agree with the folks above.
    The only way Sir Alonso is going to get a win the way things are is if RB have a coming together or a double mechanical failure.

    I for one would dearly love to see Fernando on the winners step just once even if it is purely due to luck.

    1. I guess the most interesting aspect from the season, apart from the cars 2-4 battle, is gonna be if red bull will manage to actually win all races, mclaren missed a race in 1988, mercedes did worse in % terms in their dominant years, even though they also could’ve won all races on pace.

      Their driver pairings were also strong in both cases, so the fact perez is faster now shouldn’t make it impossible to lose a race, in monza 1988 prost knew he had a mechanical issue that wouldn’t have allowed him to finish the race, so he pushed senna so that, if I recall, after prost retired, senna had to manage in the last few laps due to using too much fuel and got almost caught by the ferraris, which prompted a mistake while lapping a car and retirement.

  8. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
    8th May 2023, 10:15

    Red Bull have produced something truly dominant in every regards this season. Straights, low speed corners, high speed corners, reliability, everything. Which is truly spectacular when you consider the new regs were designed to create a much closer grid spread and more level playing field. When you factor the diminishing returns this has to go down as one of the best cars of all time.

    1. It’s however not strong enough for consistent poles, ferrari, especially with leclerc, is relatively strong in quali considering how far behind they are in the race.

      But yes, the regulations seem to have made the others closer, it’s just red bull that ran away.

  9. This whole thing shows that Formula 1 NEEDS races IN THE RAIN, which always produce novel results and almost always let the faster drivers take the spot light.

  10. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    8th May 2023, 13:40

    Alonso’s perfromance is hardly a surprise for anyone. Stroll’s pace was uncharacteristic and I suspect he’s still dealing with his injuries.

    It’s great for Aston Martin to have drivers like Vettel and Alonso tied to the name.

    Stroll senior is clearly doing something right.

    1. I have said before that I do not like Daddy Stroll nor his spoilt little son as people/personalities.

      However – I will always be grateful to him (Dad, not son) for what he has done for F1.
      He hasn’t simply bought his boy a seat, he has invested vast amounts of money buying teams and brand names and creating jobs etc within the Sport.

      On top of all that, he is now giving Fernando a chance to smile instead of curse.
      As you say @freelittlebirds he does indeed seem to be doing something right ;)

    2. Stroll senior is clearly doing something right.

      Absolutely, and it has to be recognized that he’s really trying to turn Aston Martin into a proper operation with plenty of investments in personnel and facilities. That alone is more than some of the other teams are doing. I’m sure people at Audi are looking into this closely, given their increasing involvement with Sauber.

      Whether or not he really believes what he said about Lance being able to win because he did well in in categories where the cars weren’t as big a factor is probably something only he’ll ever know; the difference between Lance and the likes of Vettel and Alonso has always remained pretty obvious to the outside.

      But with that aside, if Aston Martin can build on this with all their new facilities coming into play and show multiple seasons of good form that’ll be really impressive.

  11. I like Alonso’s optimism but there no outside pressure on RB at the moment. As long as they finish the races, they win with a comfortable margin.
    Maybe last year’s penalty will kick in and they’ll be caught (best case). Or they win all the races and this is another dull season.

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