Fernando Alonso insists that he felt no extra pressure to succeed in front of his home fans on Sunday, but revealed that the Ferrari
team was putting even greater effort into the middle part of the season, having lost valuable ground in the championship.
The Spaniard claimed only his second win on Spanish soil – and his first for seven years – as Ferrari
produced the perfect race strategy to put two drivers onto the podium in Barcelona, but, despite admitting that he received a lift from the crowd, Alonso insisted that there was no more pressure to perform than usual.
“Definitely, it was a fantastic emotion and it really helped,” he acknowledged, ”You feel the support from everybody, every single member of the team taking care of every detail because we want to do well here, in front of our fans, with so many people supporting Ferrari.
“It's very special winning at home. It doesn't matter how many times you can do it, how many you repeat it, it's always like starting from zero and you have again very emotional last laps, very long last laps, because you obviously want to finish as soon as possible.”
With no points in Malaysia and only four from a difficult race in Bahrain, Alonso went into the weekend trailing reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel
by 30 points, but insisted that he did not feel under any pressure to pull a result out of the hat before his title chances slipped away.
“Not extra pressure but it's true that we need some good races - and I will feel more or less the same in Monaco,” he claimed, “We must take extra care for the next races, in terms of possible mechanical issues, driver errors, strategy mistakes, whatever. All these things happen sometimes in races, but I think all the team and I are extra focused now on this part of the championship, because we felt we lost too many points with some things that we didn't do right. We must put everything together and avoid any more mistakes, [and] I don't think it will be any different in Monaco or in Canada.”
With Vettel only able to come home in fourth position, Alonso's win allowed him to trim 13 points from his rival's advantage, but he insisted that it was too early to start at a possible championship.
“Nothing has really changed,” he pointed out, “We know that we have had five races only, with some up and downs. Some races, we had a good race with no problems and we more or less finished on the podium in all of them. Some races, we had some mistakes, and some mechanical problems as well that we don't want to repeat.
“We know that we have a car to fight at the front and, if we do well, we can fight for the championship. I'm extremely happy for the team to have both cars on the podium after a difficult qualifying, but we knew we had the pace on the long runs and we wanted to have some clear air to exploit this potential in the car. Everything worked perfect – and, hopefully, this is not a one-off!”