With Red Bull Racing annexing the front row of the grid at the Hungaroring, Ferrari's Fernando Alonso is likely to need more than a compliant team-mate if he is to take victory, but the Spaniard is targeting a good start from the clean side of the grid in his bid to take a third win of the season.

Controversially handed the German Grand Prix, Alonso had no answer to either Sebastian Vettel or Mark Webber in qualifying for round twelve of the campaign, but knows that, with the Budapest circuit notorious for its lack of overtaking opportunities, he can still create an upset if he gets off the line quickly.

"The start, we know, is important," the double world champion confirmed, "We know Hungary - the track is very difficult to overtake, so we know strategy will be important as well. The start, first corner, first lap, will be 60 per cent or 70 per cent of the final result, so hopefully we can do a good start, as we did in Hockenheim last week, and try to overtake positions and fight a little bit.

With the Hungaroring circuit possessing possibly the dirtiest of 'dirty sides' on the start-finish straight, Alonso is particularly confident of overhauling the second Red Bull of Mark Webber on the run to the tight opening corner.

"We will see," he smiled, "I think it basically depends on how the start is. I think we know that the dirty side here is quite bad, maybe the worst of the calendar, but, at the same time, we've had some good starts this year starting on the dirty side, and some bad starts starting on the clean side. I think it will be down to the start and how things go when the red light goes off, but there is no doubt that we will have a good chance tomorrow to overtake cars at the start."

Boosted by the performance of the F10 in recent races - Valencia and Silverstone were wrecked by the safety car immediately prior to that victory in Germany - Alonso is hopeful that Sunday will be better than Saturday for the Italian squad.

"Sometimes on Saturday, we've been not close enough to Red Bull to fight for pole positions and, then, on Sunday, we are much closer on race pace," he offered, "This was the case when we were three or four tenths away from pole position but, today, we are 1.2 seconds so, even if tomorrow we have a better race pace, it may still not be enough to fight for victory.

"But we will see - anything can happen. This is a 70-lap race, a very demanding circuit for drivers, for gearboxes, engines, brakes. It is not an easy circuit. We've seen very interesting races here in Hungary, so we will fight until the chequered flag."

Acknowledging the pace of the Red Bulls which he so comprehensively out-performed at Hockenheim, Alonso admitted that he would be satisfied to finish anywhere among the top three, particularly if that keeps him ahead of McLaren duo Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button, who currently lead the championship standings.

"As we said, the start will be an important part of the race, [along with the] first corner, but there is nothing you can plan," the Spaniard insisted, "It will depend on how the car starts tomorrow afternoon. Sometimes, we did some very good starts, sometimes not so good, so fingers crossed, tomorrow, it is one of the good ones.

"But I will be happy to be on the podium, there is no doubt. I think that, knowing how the weekend has gone so far, winning the race would be a dream, but we need to be realistic, we need to know that there are two cars much quicker than us so, at the moment, we deserve third position in qualifying, and theoretically we deserve third position in the race.

"At the moment, the McLaren drivers are leading the championship and the McLaren team is leading the constructors' [standings], so we need to take points and reduce the gap to them. Once the Red Bulls are leading the championship, if they do so, we will see what we can do [about them] but, at the moment, we need to keep taking points from McLaren."

Comments

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register to add your comment