SportF1Alonso was 6th in FP2 but thinks Alpine has...

Alonso was 6th in FP2 but thinks Alpine has more pace

The Alpine team has a 29-point lead over AlphaTauri in the fight for fifth position in the constructors’ championship in 2021. The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is the last of the season and Fernando Alonso wants to close his comeback season by helping the team that saw him win two titles in 2005 and 2006.

The Asturian driver returned to F1 after two years away from the paddock , but, as he himself indicated after his podium in Qatar, between eyebrows and eyebrows he only has the goal of being world champion again, and 2022 seems his last bullet in the chamber with the gigantic change of regulation.

To create a winning car, Alpine must score as many points as possible in this final race at Yas Marina, as the difference between finishing fifth or sixth in the constructors is rewarded with a handful of millions of euros.

Alonso started the weekend with two sixth positions in the free practice sessions at Yas Marina, showing that the French car can put up a fight in Sunday’s race. In Free Practice 1, he completed 26 laps, while in the second practice he did 27 laps, for a total of 53 , something vital with the modification of the track in three different zones.

“It’s been a good Friday for us, and I liked the changes to the circuit. It’s the third weekend in a row that we’re going to a new track, and that means we have to do a lot of laps to try different lines and find the time back”, commented the #14 as soon as he got out of the car.

The drivers only have two hours of testing to have their car ready before Saturday, qualifying day, so the Spaniard was clear about what he had to do. He spent much of the time out of the garage, and showed solid pace, both over the single lap and in the long stint.

Alonso, however, warned that his final position in Free Practice 2 was somewhat misleading: “We have maximized our track time in both sessions, and my best time was eliminated in Free Practice 2, so there is more than meets the eye. has seen in the final classification”.

“We need a bit more to adjust the car set-up, but I think it’s been a good day for us and we have more to come tomorrow,” he concluded.

 

The sports director of the French team, Alan Permane , also spoke after finishing the first free practice in Abu Dhabi: “The two sessions have been quite good today, the first one we dedicated to learning the new parts of the circuit and understanding how the tires work with the modifications to the track, which seems more fluid and can give more opportunities for overtaking at turn 5 and 9”.

The last race of this year 2021 could be good for Alpine , and they are confident: “The drivers feel very good with the car, although in Free Practice 1 they had a bit of understeer, so we made some changes and we saw that they improved for the afternoon”.

“We’re happy with the pace on a full and empty tank of fuel, so we’ll see what the rest of the weekend brings,” he said.

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