Fernando Alonso Admits Q3 Runs Carried 'Uncomfortable Level of Risk'

"Six months ago we were here in Suzuka, 1.5 seconds off pole position. We are four tenths [away] today."

by Sead Dedovic
Fernando Alonso Admits Q3 Runs Carried 'Uncomfortable Level of Risk'
© Robert Cianflone/Getty Images Sport

Fernando Alonso has once again impressed us, this time by securing 5th place in the qualifying session at the F1 Japanese GP. The experienced driver is content with his performance and dedication, having maximized the potential of his car. He admitted to taking a risk at one point during the race, hoping to benefit from it, despite having made a similar mistake earlier. Alonso compared Aston Martin's performance from the previous race to this one. The fact that they are now much closer to the frontrunners indicates that they are making progress day by day.

“Extremely happy. There is not much left on the car today. It seems that we squeezed every tenth of a second out there.

The last two runs in Q3 was a little bit on, let’s say an uncomfortable level of risking. It didn’t work in Australia for example in Q3, I went off in Turn 6.

When you drive at that limit, it’s just a little bit of luck as well that you complete the lap. But today everything was fine. Happy with P5.

Six months ago we were here in Suzuka, 1.5 seconds off pole position. We are four tenths [away] today. So definitely we are making big steps forward.”- Alonso said, as quoted by Crash!

Explaining his decision to switch to Aston Martin's upgraded package during qualifying, Fernando Alonso highlighted its benefits. He mentioned that it certainly made a difference, although quantifying it precisely might be challenging and would require analysis from the team using the collected data.

Alonso emphasized the constant search for performance improvements in Formula 1. While the new package provided a boost, the nature of the sport means teams are always looking for the next advancement. It's a continuous quest for performance improvement, with each step forward prompting anticipation for the next one.

Aston Martin is a team that has made important progress in recent years, demonstrating their serious ambitions and intentions for the future. The decision to engage Fernando Alonso surely ranks among the best moves the team has made lately. While some may have doubted Alonso's capabilities, considering him a driver whose time has passed, Fernando has silenced all critics. He has shown that he is still one of those who can compete at the highest level.

Fernando Alonso
Fernando Alonso© Clive Mason/Getty Images Sport

Despite his strong qualifying performance, Alonso expressed skepticism about maintaining his position in Sunday's grand prix.

Reflecting on the team's performance in the previous races, he noted a pattern of strength on Saturdays but less consistency on Sundays. Alonso acknowledged the possibility of being overtaken by competitors such as Oscar and the two Mercedes, which could lead to falling back to their usual position.

Aware of the challenges he has faced, the Spaniard aims to remain cautious and avoid creating unnecessary excitement. He knows the current state of the F1 scene and understands what to expect in this race. However, Fernando is someone who can truly secure his position and even progress further. It will be interesting to see what this experienced driver can achieve in tomorrow's race.

He maintained an open mindset towards the race outcome, expressing pride and satisfaction with his performance on Saturday while remaining hopeful for Sunday's challenges. 

Fernando Alonso and Mercedes

Fernando Alonso is increasingly linked with Mercedes, especially with Lewis Hamilton set to join Ferrari next season, leaving a vacant spot in the team. While Alonso is currently performing well with Aston Martin, the Spaniard might feel flattered by Mercedes' interest in his services.

Mercedes' executives have acknowledged Alonso as one of the options under consideration, alongside several others. Their intention is to closely monitor developments in the F1 scene this season, prepared to make strategic moves in their favor.

What adds intrigue is Alonso's wealth of experience, similar to Hamilton's, which could prove crucial for Mercedes in the upcoming seasons. His expertise and skills could become valuable assets for Mercedes as they pursue championship titles in the coming years.

Alonso is also a driver being linked with Red Bull. It's still uncertain whether Sergio Perez will remain part of the team in the coming seasons, but many aren't optimistic about the Mexican defending Red Bull's colors next year. This presents a fantastic opportunity for Alonso to join a team that holds a dominant position in the F1 scene. 

Judging by reactions on social media, fans of the sport believe that Alonso's addition would be a fantastic move for Red Bull. Alonso would potentially have the chance to compete for the championship, making for a notable storyline in F1. The next season will bring a multitude of changes and excitement, considering the rumors circulating.

Fernando Alonso