Fernando Alonso has warned Ferrari fans that a series of upgrades planned for the Turkish Grand Prix this weekend won't be a 'revolutionary change' that will suddenly allow the team to fight at the front of the field.
has endured a trying start to 2011 and has yet to take a podium finish after three races, with Red Bull already 55 points ahead in the constructors championship as a result.
This weekend, Ferrari will introduce a new front and rear wing as well as new brake ducts in an effort to take the 150º Italia closer to the pace, but Alonso insisted the team had to try and make progress 'step-by-step' – with it unlikely to see a big jump in performance in Istanbul.
We know that the new parts we have here will improve the car compared to China: it should be worth a couple of tenths per lap but it is not a revolutionary change,” he said. “We will not change the car completely in just one race. Step by step we must close the gap and we are very happy with the work we did over these last three weeks, but we need to wait, probably until qualifying to see how much of the gap we have closed, given that we can expect the other teams to have also made progress.
“It will be a good motivation for everyone in the team if we can do well here. For my part, I did what I could in the break, working in the simulator, which is the most a driver can do really to help the team. I am sure we will recover very soon and hopefully here in Turkey, we can see the first signs of some positive results.”
The Spaniard added that the short break between the races in China and Turkey had given Ferrari time to look into what improvements it can make and said there was still plenty of time for the team to recover the ground it has lost so far.
“We've had three weeks to recover from the first three races and now I am ready for another three races in four weeks, which follows the same pattern as the start of the season, with one race on its own and then two races one week after the other,” he added. “We will hopefully score more points in these three than in the first three. Last season we lost points at the beginning and then we recovered in the last part and we got close to winning the championship at the final race.
“This year we are currently losing points and we are aware there is some distance to the leaders. But it is much earlier in the season than last year when we only started to recover at Silverstone around race eleven or so and now this is only race four so there is still plenty of time.”