Fernando Alonso, despite a promising result in the German Grand Prix, has conceded that it will be a tough task getting third place in the F1 constructors' table back from Williams.
The Grove team overtook Ferrari courtesy of Valtteri Bottas' second place at Hockenheim – the Finn's third successive podium finish – and left round ten of the season with a five-point advantage over its storied rival, with the Hungarian Grand Prix coming up this weekend. Neither teams' second driver scored in Germany, with Kimi Raikkonen eleventh for Ferrari and Felipe Massa ending the race on his head after a lap one incident, but the Brazilian's pace suggests that he will only help Williams pull away from the Prancing Horse once his luck turns.
“[Getting third place back] is going to be difficult,” Alonso conceded on Sunday night, “There are no doubts that Williams is in good form now, and they've been very competitive since Canada, although they didn't really show their potential there.
“Canada, Austria, Silverstone and here, they have been out of reach for us, so we really need to do a better job if we want to fight with them in the constructors' championship.”
Insisting that he took no consolation from being able to fight with the two Red Bull cars in recent races, and admitting that his current fourth place in the drivers' table was both unrealistic and likely to be short-lived as Bottas closes in, Alonso conceded that it was not just Williams that Ferrari needed to be watching out for.
“We cannot forget Force India and McLaren, especially as McLaren is now very fast,” he noted, “Yesterday, they were half a second faster than us, so that is also a threat from behind. We need to keep working, keep improving, as the target remains the same, to score as many points as possible and help Ferrari every weekend.”
Agreeing that the cooler conditions brought about by a change in the weekend weather may have played to the Scuderia's advantage, Alonso remained cautious when contemplating the potential for a repeat in Hungary.
“I think [cooler conditions] did help to be honest, as I felt more competitive today than yesterday,” he confirmed, “Being fifth and fighting with two Red Bulls was something that yesterday was probably difficult to imagine with the pace we saw in qualifying. That was positive but, for Hungary, we will see.... Some years it is hot, but some of the races were not so hot and even now, with the weather as it is, it could even rain, so we'll see what Hungary gives us...”