Sunday, June 4, 2023

Alonso hopes Aston Martin is ‘one of the candidates’ for the Monaco pole after Friday’s ‘Fun’

Fernando Alonso believes Aston Martin is in contention for pole position on Saturday after a “fun” first day of racing in Monaco, with the Spaniard and teammate Lance Stroll confident behind the wheel of the AMR23.

Alonso enjoyed a good start on Friday, setting the fastest lap time with Carlos Sainz in FP1 as he finished the session in second place, before setting the fourth fastest time in the qualifying Sim race in second practice.

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Reflecting on his day after jumping out of the cockpit on Friday night, Alonso, a two-time Monte Carlo winner, said: “It was good. I think we had a great day. We complete the program of life.

“A couple of red flags that were the same for everyone, but we had enough laps to be confident with the car, which is very important here – to get into the mode of the weekend. The car felt good, easy to drive, which is what you expect at this type of track, so I’m happy.

“I entered with a lot of confidence already because this coach has given me positive things throughout the year, so he does not disappoint me today; It was nice to drive, I’m having fun and I’m ready for tomorrow.”

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Aston Martin entered Monaco in second place in the manufacturer’s championship with 102 points, six points more than rivals Mercedes, who brought the best car this weekend, and Alonso was very cautious about the pace of the Silver Arrows.

“I think it’s always been there,” Alonso said when asked about the pace of Mercedes. “The three Australians were outstanding in the race. They finish P2 so I think there will be a lot of variety for everyone throughout the season.

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“We just have to be consistent, we try to save every weekend, maximize the points that are available knowing and accepting that sometimes we will be faster than them, sometimes slower, and we still need to score points.

Asked if he could secure his first pole position of the season, Alonso replied: “Let’s see. I think I will play everything tomorrow [for] but we were one of the candidates.

His teammate Stroll was ninth fastest in the first half, before setting the nation’s second-fastest hour in the 11th hour, and while the Canadian is happy with the car’s performance, he believes there will be a few things that will need to be addressed on the night. .

“Traffic is always complicated here; It’s a short bay and it’s always tricky, but today we had a good race and we learned a lot,” said Stroll. “You’ll keep us working in the coach tonight and see what we can do tomorrow.

HOW IT’S DONE: Follow all the action from the second practice of the Monaco Grand Prix

“Ave is working well here. He’s behaving well, and I think he’s just going to settle a few things overnight and see what we can do tomorrow.

Asked if a top three finish was in the qualifying papers, Stroll said: “It’s been really tight all year and I think it’s just, like I said, tweaking some parts and tying them all together. Staying in business is important, getting good slips, all that makes a difference around here.”

Later he added: “Just exit the pocket with no traffic, and then, I think, the central sector punishes you when you have a car close to you. Coming out of the linen and furniture, removing the mud. This is all the difference here.’

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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