If you expect this post to talk about Fernando Alonso’s views on the racism in F1 and the Lewis Hamilton abuse in Spain that made it to the media today, then you are wrong. I am going to talk about how Fernando Alonso sees the form of the teams ahead of the 2008 Formula 1 season .
Mark Gene, the Ferrari test driver, raised his suspicion few days ago, that Renault may be deliberately hiding their true performance. When reading what Alonso had to say, one either has to fully agree or fully disagree with Mark Gene… Make your pick:
“We are very far, very far. I think it’s looking like at the end of last year: two Ferraris, two McLarens and two BMWs, and if everything goes like that, you can almost only fight for seventh place. Thinking about the podium would be too optimistic right now, but then you arrive in the first grand prix, you start warming up in practice, your morale starts going up and you think you can be on the podium. But right now, thinking coldly, reaching the podium is a dream. In our current shape it will be hard to make it into Q3.”
He was also quoted saying:
“We are not in a position to do anything about McLaren, Ferrari or BMW. Ferrari are favourites but they’re not in a different world. We however belong more to the group including Williams and Red Bull.”
Another interesting observation for double world champ that I haven’t hear from anybody else yet refers to BMW Sauber:
“They are very fast with a lot of fuel. Sometimes you look at their times, and you see what they’ve done in stints of 25 or 30 laps. That is, with 60 or 70 kilos of fuel. They have surprised me the most in the last two or three tests.”
Now this needs some translation to fanspeak:
- Ferarri are the quickest but not as far ahead as it may seem
- McLaren and BMW Sauber are not far behind and it may actually be BMW Sauber sandbagging and not showing their true form yet.
- Alonso does not consider Williams to be the 3rd best as lots of fans do and many hope for.
- Renault, Red Bull and Williams form the strong midfield of six cars fighting for 4 spare places in Q3
- Without mentioning Honda and Toyota he sends them where most fans, bloggers and insiders send them too
- Toro Rosso, Force India and Super Aguri are not on his radar
I must say, that his predictions (translated by me) are almost identical to mine. Just it looks like I have more confidence in Renault than Fernando Alonso has . Or are the Renault guys really making these “we are very far” claims up ?