Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin, Circuit de Catalunya, 2024

Aston Martin must accept we are “not in a position to score points” – Alonso

Formula 1

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Fernando Alonso says Aston Martin need to accept they are no longer competing for points after losing ground to their rivals in recent races.

Two weeks after the team scored its best result of the season in Canada, Alonso and team mate Lance Stroll finished 12th and 14th respectively in Spain.

“We didn’t have the pace,” said Alonso. “I think Barcelona, at the end, it puts you in the pace order. There is nothing to hide, eventually over 66 laps you end up in the position you deserve.

“Today we are P12 and this is the maximum. The car was not great the whole weekend, we confirmed it in the race as well a lot of sliding, especially the high-speed corners, which obviously kills the tyres so you get into a bad spiral. In the end, a tough weekend.”

Alonso, who is ninth in the drivers’ championship, was happy with his qualifying performance on Saturday after taking 10th on the grid, which he said was better than he expected. However he was unable to prevent Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg finishing ahead of him in the race, despite the latter being given a five-second time penalty.

This weekend’s race is the first of three events on consecutive weekends at circuits with a similar range of mid-to-high speed corners. Aston Martin brought some updates for its car this weekend but Alonso says the team must make a bigger step forwards soon.

“I think it’s going to be difficult,” he said. “We cannot lie to ourselves, it’s where we are at the moment. We are not in a position to score points.

“We have to make a significant step forwards, hopefully in the next few races. I think in Austria, in five days time, there is not much coming to Spielberg, and Silverstone, so hopefully in Hungary or later we will have a step that helps us in terms of performance. Now, we are a little bit down.”

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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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10 comments on “Aston Martin must accept we are “not in a position to score points” – Alonso”

  1. I think this just puts in to perspective that Aston fluked it last year by starting the season with a competitive car. They took a lot of Red bull inspirations of 2022, and bolted it on their car.. but suffered the trademark copy cat flaw of not understanding their car well enough to develop it effectively. Every update has either not brought its desired performance or has been a step backwards.
    I can’t see Aston finishing higher than P5 or 6 in the WCC this year or in 2025. Initially I was optimistic about their 2026 chances as they are essentially going to be a factory team of Honda engines… but the more I think about it… Aston plus Honda engines could easily line up at the back of the grid in 2026

    1. Their only hope is getting Newey. Otherwise, it’s clear that Fallows is a complete joke. Without a relatively recent Newey design to copy from, he’s got nothing to offer. He’s clearly one of those engineers who does the tedious, but necessary elbow grease math and sim work under Newey and then gets handed the halo effect (kind of like Paddy Lowe was always doing).

    2. The clampdown on flexi-wings has also played a part, that wasn’t entirely a fluke.
      Also moving to new facilities, calibrating new tools and learning from it isn’t done overnight and I still like to think there’s more to come from Aston in the next few years, hopefully for 2026.

  2. An Sionnach
    23rd June 2024, 18:40

    It’s a shame. 3.5 competitive teams, 6 – 8 competitive cars… and a driver who’s easily top five is not in one of them.

    1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
      23rd June 2024, 19:03

      If you are on about alonso, stroll has scored as many points as the “top 5 driver” in the past 4 races. Just recently, alonso’s form has dropped a lot that I wouldn’t say he’s been doing enough to be considered a top driver. Stroll has also outqualified him 4 times.

      If alonso is at such a high level, I would say stroll has to be considered at least fully deserving of an f1 seat.

      1. Reasonable people have Stroll worthy of an F1 drive. It’s just that, usually, drivers that are at his level tend to have shorter careers than the one he’s gonna end up with.

      2. An Sionnach
        24th June 2024, 0:13

        Alonso has put in a few very poor performances. When I hear a commentator say he’s had an uncharacteristic error, I wonder just how uncharacteristic they are. Still, I would like to see more over the course of the season. I’m not saying that Alonso is perfect. I think that a significant number of the other top drivers all have some big weaknesses. Max makes very few mistakes and is alarmingly consistent, but the others are all over the place. Hamilton might have the most consistent race pace of the others when he gets going, but that hasn’t been on display too much this season. If there’s a fighting chance at all, Alonso seems well able to hold onto a position, and this seems like an alien concept to much of the rest of the field. Norris and Leclerc are lightning fast, but erratic in qualifying, which should be their strongest suit. If they get into a good position they (and/or the team) manage to do almost the only thing that can lose them the race when it comes to the pitstops. Thankfully for Ferrari they got to win with their favourite son when no pitstop was required! Russell needs to keep his head in the race. I think he did well today, defending like you would expect him to, but without the bit where he hits someone. Sainz goes off the boil far too much. Oscar had been more consistent than Lando up to recently, but hasn’t been spectacular.

      3. Your obsession with Hamilton and resulting hatred for Alonso is amusing. Your statement might have the slightest merit if you looked at this race, skipped qualifying (where he out qualified his car by a lot), skipped Montreal where he also out qualified his car and came home higher than the car deserved, skipped AM putting him in a terrible run order in Monaco in a bad car and then looked at Imola and pretended he was only the one great driver to ever crash a car in practice which messed up his quali (they ran him super heavy in Q1 to make sure the car was OK and feel it out with the new changes and when they finally put him on low fuel with competitive tires he was on pace for a top 5 lap time before he touched the gravel – had they put him on a sensible run plan he could have driven with a lot more margin).

        Points are 41 vs 17
        Quali is 6 – 4 which is what people are trying to make a big deal out of, but we’ve seen there were mitigating circumstances

        The points tally is also representative of the fact that Stroll can only look marginally competitive with Alonso when the car is terrible. When the car is good Alonso is usually 20-40+ seconds down the track and 5+ places higher in quali.

        1. This was @Ben Rowe if it wasn’t clear…

    2. Finally, Alonso is easily top 3 at worst. Other than Max who has been convincingly as consistent as Alonso since 2023?

      -He went longer than anybody else last season before failing to get into Q3 and that came only after a radical update that destroyed the car.

      -He also went further into the season than any other driver before failing to score last season and that was due to a mechanical problem.

      -He had the biggest points margin of any pairing besides Max and Checo

      -He and Max made far fewer mistakes than anyone else

      So, it’s pretty amusing to see the only opportunity for people to criticize Alonso when his car is clearly absolute junk.

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