F1 »

Alonso brilliance seals Renault P4 goal.

He may not have won this time, but Fernando Alonso was no less impressive than he has been of late in the Chinese Grand Prix, maintaining his record as Formula 1's most successful driver around the Shanghai International Circuit to come home in fourth position – securing the same spot for Renault in the constructors' world championship in the process.

The Spaniard – buoyed by his two stand-out back-to-back victories in the unfancied R28 in Singapore and Japan – began the Chinese outing from fourth on the grid, and after being overtaken by McLaren-Mercedes' Heikki Kovalainen at the start, fought back to take advantage of an error by the Finn later around the opening lap and dive past again on the brakes into the final corner.

From there the former double F1 World Champion would run a somewhat lonely race, never under any real threat from behind but equally – a late charge apart – never close enough to put any great pressure on the two Ferraris ahead of him either.

Nonetheless, the five points he gained were enough to guarantee the Régie will end the campaign in fourth spot in the constructors' title chase – despite Alonso's assertion earlier this season that the car was perhaps 'one of the worst' on the 2008 grid [see separate story – click here] – and have also hauled him above his McLaren replacement Kovalainen into sixth position in the drivers' standings…a fact that will surely not be lost on the man from Oviedo.

“Fourth place is the best result that we could have hoped for today,” the 27-year-old underlined, “so I am therefore extremely satisfied with my race. We had good pace, close to the Ferrari, which is another reason to be pleased.

“We have now won the battle for fourth place in the constructors' championship, which was our objective, and so we can approach the Brazilian Grand Prix with confidence and aim to make the most of this final race of the year.”

Rookie team-mate Nelsinho Piquet also added to the Enstone-based outfit's tally with a consistent performance to grab the final marker for eighth spot, having featured as high as fifth at one point by dint of running a long opening stint from tenth on the grid.

What's more, the under-pressure Brazilian's fifth points finish of an at times troubled debut season in the top flight – and his fourth from the last eight races – builds on his Fuji performance and sees him travel to his home grand prix at Interlagos in a fortnight's time in positive spirits.

“It was a difficult race but I am happy with my performance,” the 23-year-old remarked. “Of course I would have liked to have made more progress through the field, but the end result is satisfying and I have scored an important point, which has helped the team finally confirm its fourth place in the constructors' championship.”

“It was a good race for us today,” agreed Renault managing director Flavio Briatore. “We were able to show our true level of performance – that we are stronger than BMW and very close to Ferrari. Our result means we have secured fourth place in the constructors' championship and confirmed our recent progress.”

“Another strong race for us today,” summarised the French concern's executive director of engineering Pat Symonds. “Points scored by our both drivers have now secured our fourth position in the championship, which was the target we set ourselves in the middle of the season.”

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Fernando Alonso (ESP) Renault R28, Chinese F1 Grand Prix, Shanghai, 17th-19th October 2008
22.06.2017 - Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
22.06.2017 - Press conference, Daniil Kvyat (RUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H and Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32
22.06.2017 - Press conference, Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32
22.06.2017 - Mercedes AMG F1 W08 detail
22.06.2017 - Mercedes AMG F1 W08, detail
22.06.2017 - Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
22.06.2017 - Mercedes AMG F1 W08, detail
22.06.2017 - Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
22.06.2017 - Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
22.06.2017 - Renault Sport F1 Team RS17, detail
22.06.2017 - McLaren MCL32, detail
22.06.2017 - Mercedes AMG F1 W08 detail
22.06.2017 - Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team RS17
11.06.2017- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
11.06.2017- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
11.06.2017- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
11.06.2017- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.

© 1999 - 2017 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.