Alonso praises underestimated Verstappen after record breaking win

Alonso secured his first podium for Aston Martin since Canada at the Dutch GP.

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Fernando Alonso believes the level of dominance by Max Verstappen has been underestimated after the Dutchman took his 11th win of 2023 in Sunday’s Dutch Grand Prix.

Local hero Verstappen mastered the tricky conditions in Zandvoort, leading convincingly from the second round of stops to take the 46th win of his Formula 1 career.

“Yeah, it is underestimated sometimes what Max is achieving,” Alonso told media including Total-Motorsport.com after the race. “I think to win, in such a dominant manner in any professional sport, is so complicated.

“So we understand the level of feel, obviously with a lot of self-confidence, drivers in general. So I do believe that I [be as] good as well. I felt I was at my best and getting 100% [out] of the car.

Max is achieving that 100% more often than us at the moment than any of the drivers, so that’s why he’s dominating.”

Trust in car key to podium

After a run of mixed races, Alonso could finally showcase his early season magic from fifth on the grid in Zandvoort, overtaking Alex Albon and George Russell on the opening lap.

The two-time world champion stayed in third for most of the race until conditions worsened and tripped up second place Sergio Perez, handing the position to Alonso, who was rewarded with Driver of the Day. 

“Yeah, the car was working well,” said Alonso. “I had trust in the car, which in these conditions. You need that level of trust to know how much you [can] push.

“At the beginning of the race, there were just a few drops of rain, but we’re still on the slick tyre, and yeah, quickly, we switched to the inters, so we could not capitalise on that.

“But we still make some moves in Turn 3 at the start on Alex and George, and also Lando on Lap 2. So yeah, I was quite happy with the race.

“You will find those Sundays where you feel connected to the car. You feel in sync with everything you do. The car is just answering perfectly.”

Ed Spencer
Ed Spencer
FIA accredited journalist
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