Fernando Alonso says he was wary of lunging at Max Verstappen in the final laps of the Dutch Grand Prix after finishing second behind his rival.Zandvoort, to the delight of the Dutch fans.
“This is a very special race track with all the fans and the energy going on, so you feel always very focussed,” said Alonso. “I did think about trying a move in the last restart [on Max], but then I thought maybe I cannot exit the circuit, so I stayed calm in second.”
Alonso equalled his best result of the season so far with second place and reached the podium for the first time since the Canadian Grand Prix in mid-June.
“Two years ago when this race came I thought I will never experience maybe the Zandvoort podium because I was not in the position to think about that,” he said. “And today it’s going to be very special to share the podium with Max and Pierre.”
He started from fifth on the grid, but gained ground early in the race when he was one of the first drivers to pit following a rain shower which hit the track on lap one.
“It was a very intense race,” said Alonso. “Obviously at the beginning with the wet conditions we were very, very fast.
“We stopped maybe one lap too late, but the same as the leaders, and the car was flying today, very competitive, very easy to drive. In these conditions you need a car that you can trust, and I did trust the car a lot today so I did enjoy it.”
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2023 Dutch Grand Prix
- Azerbaijan GP defeat was key to record-equalling run of wins – Verstappen
- “Too early to say” if podium signals return to form for Aston Martin – Alonso
- Verstappen makes history with unbeaten hat-track in first home races
- Perez is ‘doing his job and will be our driver in 2024’, Horner insists
- Ferrari had the “sixth or seventh fastest car” at Zandvoort – Sainz