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F1 Italian GP: Alonso: McLaren can target Ferrari

Fernando Alonso predicts McLaren can produce the pace to match Ferrari in a few races at the end of the 2016 F1 season.
Fernando Alonso predicts McLaren can produce the pace to match Ferrari in a few races at the end of the 2016 F1 season and is confident of battling for points regularly from Singapore onwards.

The McLaren driver endured a difficult race as he predicted during the build-up to the Italian Grand Prix to eventually finish 14th after aborting his race strategy.

Click here for full Italian GP race results from Monza

While running 12th he was passed by McLaren team-mate Jenson Button in the closing stages which prompted him to pit for fresh super-softs for a final three-lap dash to set the fastest lap of the race, a 1m 25.340s, to produce the first Honda-powered lap record since Ayrton Senna at the 1992 Portuguese GP.

“It was a good feeling [the fastest lap],” Alonso said. “We had new tyres at the end and the last two laps we maximised the grip, but it doesn't change too much because it was a circuit that we weren't competitive. But it was a good sign that the car was performing well.”

Taking this heightened performance Alonso has reassessed McLaren's targets and realistically feels he can battle inside the top ten at every race for the remainder of 2016.

“From Singapore onwards I think we should be in the points regularly,” he said. “Some races like Abu Dhabi and Austin we can be in the top five fighting with Ferrari so good times are coming.”

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by Haydn Cobb



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
02.09.2016 - Free Practice 2, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H and Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-31
Pirelli tyre compound choices, Japanese Grand Prix [Credit: Pirelli]
Pirelli tyre compound choices, Malaysian Grand Prix [Credit: Pirelli]
18.09.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Maurizio Arrivabene (ITA) Ferrari Team Principal
18.09.2016 - Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
18.09.2016 - Race, Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams FW38 leads Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31
18.09.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H

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theoldgitspeaks

September 05, 2016 4:08 PM

I would have thought that they have to target Mercedes afterall they are the fastest cars and McLaren will need to be as fast or faster if they expect to win races and the championship, unless Ferrari can maks a quantum leap soon Red Bull and others will begin to beat them on a regular basis. Personally I don't see McLaren winning next season and it is at least debatable wether Alonso will be around for long if they don't. Maybe Button will sneak back in and claim his second championship in 2018! Would that not be a wonderful end to a great career?



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