"Starting sixth and eight we were likely to be ninth and 10th into the first corner," he pointed out. Instead, the decision to drop Massa back five points had not only benefitted Alonso, but had also enabled the Brazilian to finish in fourth place as well.
"I think it was maybe the best race of the season - it was like a victory," said Massa, bouncing back from being obviously frustrated at having to cope with an artificial penalty on the grid. "For sure I was not happy this morning but we know how important it was. We know it's not easy to find another driver who would do that."
"Felipe was fantastic all weekend," said Alonso. "He was very fast in FP3. He was faster than me in Q1, Q2, Q3. We need this form from Felipe in Sao Paulo. Red Bull will be strong and we need our team to be united."
Looking ahead to next weekend's season finale, Alonso was happy to hear that rain was being forecast.
"With a normal race in dry conditions, I think Red Bull will be one-two and us sixth and seventh," he admitted. "But in a wet race, anything can happen.
"We saw today Webber retired: sometimes it's the alternator, KERS, brakes or water, [but] it always happens on that car. Maybe in Brazil those problems will change [Vettel's] car."