Fernando Alonso has said that he believes Ferrari can a factor in the Canadian Grand Prix in two weekends' time, provided the Scuderia finds a swift response to the problems that rendered it an also ran in Turkey.

While Felipe Massa converted eight on the grid into seventh at the chequered flag, Alonso climbed from the outside of row six to claim fourth points for eighth place at the finish, and admitted that the result was hardly a fitting celebration for Ferrari's 800th grand prix appearance.

"The Turkish Grand Prix was, without doubt, the worst event of the season," the Spaniard confirmed, "Our performance level was simply not competitive compared to McLaren and Red Bull and, in qualifying, we even struggled against teams that, up until now, were behind us. I wasn't able to get to Q3 and that compromised my race - when you start from twelfth, there is not much you can do."

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While offering no reason for being unable to improve his lap time on two flying efforts at the end of Q2, Alonso insisted that he did all he could to salvage some points from a track that had yielded three wins in as many races for team-mate Massa in the past.

"On Sunday, I did what I could - it was a case of damage limitation and I think we succeeded in that," the double world champion claimed, "On the opening lap, I did not lose any places, which was not that easy given I was starting from the dirty side of the track, and, after that, I managed to get ahead of some cars thanks to a good pit-stop strategy.

"[However,] I was at the back of a train made up of the two Mercedes, the two Renaults and the two Ferraris. We all had more or less the same pace, so overtaking would have been very tricky. At first, I tried to look after the tyres to see if that would give me a chance in the final laps and, indeed, at the end, [Vitaly] Petrov was struggling more than me with his tyres and I made the most of it to overtake him four laps from the chequered flag."

Frustrated at being stuck behind the Russian rookie for so long, the move, when it came, saw the two cars made contact, removing Petrov from the points and hobbling Alonso's F10.

"It wasn't easy and, in the passing move, I damaged a wheel rim, but luckily I was able to finish the race without any problems, bringing home at least a few points," he noted, "I am sorry I was not able to celebrate Ferrari's 800th grand prix in a fitting way but, in Istanbul, we were not quick enough and we have to react immediately.

"The championship is still wide open with everything to play for. I am fourth in the classification, 14 points off the leader and, if the old points system still applied, the difference would be just four. However, it's clear we need to make a jump forward in terms of developing the car. Over the first four races, we matched the pace of our main rivals but, since we have been back in Europe, that is no longer the case.

"When I was racing against Ferrari, I admired its ability to react, producing probably the best development during the season. The people are the same now, so there is no reason why the same thing cannot happen this year: I trust our team and, above all, I trust in the will to win that every last one of us shares."

While the Prancing Horse is due to bring a major upgrade to the next European round, there is the small matter of the Canadian Grand Prix between now and then. Alonso, however, is optimistic that the red machine can be back in the fight during its trans-Atlantic sojourn.

"For Valencia, we will have a major update package which should see us make a good step forward, but I believe that, in Canada, we will have a different situation," he claimed, "The Montreal circuit will be better suited to the characteristics of the F10 and I think we will definitely be more competitive.

"Our aim in this championship is to fight with McLaren and Red Bull for the podium and, with all due respect to my former team, definitely not with a Renault for eighth place. The hierarchy in the field can change from race to race, as we saw in Monaco, where we had the potential to fight for victory, but we have to improve our performance."