Fernando Alonso says he ii encouraged by Aston Martin’s performance at the Azerbaijan GP despite the Spaniard missing out on a podium for the first time this season.
Alonso came over the line fourth just a few seconds behind the Ferrari of Charles Leclerc, despite being significantly down on straight line speed and the car not being as effective in Baku as it was in the first three tracks of the year.
Speaking to media after the race, Alonso said he was nonetheless happy to be in such close range to Ferrari despite the team suffering a number of difficulties with their DRS across the weekend.
“Yeah, it was very good. I think I’m very, very happy with the result on the base of the car. I think the weekend was not maybe as competitive as the first three races. But even with that, I think today in the race the car’s pace was very good, very strong,” Alonso said.
“And then we challenged for the podium, only one second to Charles. So, that’s very encouraging for us, I think, that on a bad weekend, let’s say from Aston, we are fighting for the podium, against one of the best weekend’s for Ferrari.
“They were on pole position on the Sprint Race and for the main race. And they were just one second in front of us on Sunday.”
Better chance in Miami
While the Baku City Street Circuit may not have rewarded the Aston Martin team, Alonso added he believed it would be a different story in the next race at the Miami GP, which he says should play more to the strengths of the car.
“So yeah, a lot of speed. You know, I never been that fast. For the whole weekend. So yeah, I was happy with everything I said on the car. The strength of the car, for whatever reason is still tight regulation, which is seems to be better than others,” Alonso said.
“Unfortunately, with the safety car, we put the hard tires and that tire was very robust until the end. Without that safety car in the Ferrari, they were struggling a lot in the first stint.
“So yeah, maybe Miami is a better chance for us. It was tricky today with a tailwind. So Turn 15 and 16 were very random every lap of the race and that was the biggest difficulty.”