Fernando Alonso was 'pleased' to finish on the podium in the inaugural Indian Grand Prix today at the all-new Buddh International Circuit.
Alonso tried to challenge Mark Webber at the start, but went wide in his Ferrari in Turn 1 and then slipped to fourth.
The Spaniard then found himself trapped in P4 until the second and final round of pit stops, when he managed to get ahead of the Red Bull man, eventually finishing 1.2 seconds ahead.
“It's nice to jump on the podium for India's debut in F1 and I'm pleased to have a new trophy to take home,” said Alonso after the 17th round in the F1 2011 World Championship.
“Today, the team was fantastic, managing to fix a problem on the front wing which was only identified twenty minutes before the start.
“At the start, I did not get away particularly well and so [Jenson] Button was able to pass me.
“Then I tried to stay close to Webber and when he slowed down a bit, I closed right up and, staying out on track a few laps longer than him, I was able to get ahead of him. Being patient paid off.
“Now we head for Abu Dhabi, a race that is a bit unusual. Maybe I will go to the Ferrari Park to play golf to relax prior to the race and then, on Sunday night, I will try and bring home the only trophy not yet in my collection.”
Asked if he can still finish second in the drivers' championship after Button extended the gap between them to 13 points with two races left, Alonso added that it won't be easy to get the vice-champions spot.
“After this race, second place in the Drivers' championship is still possible, but it will be very difficult because McLaren is on great form at the moment, even if the gap is only 13 points,” he explained.
“We are very aware that on paper, we are behind the two Red Bulls and the two McLarens.”