Current championship leader, Fernando Alonso reckons that he has to finish tomorrow, after he failed to score in Hungary three weeks ago - even though he has a comfortable advantage over Kimi Raikkonen in the battle for the drivers' title with just six races still to go.

The Spaniard, who will line-up third on the grid, added that the wind had made things tough in qualifying.

"The conditions were much windier this afternoon than we had in practice, and we saw that it was a difficult qualifying session for all the drivers as lots of people went off," noted the Renault ace.

"In that situation, you have to take the gamble of either taking some risks, or being conservative: I pushed hard and came through OK, so it is great to be third, on the clean side of the grid. The wind actually surprised me a little bit down the back straight - it was a strong tailwind, and I braked at my normal point but missed the apex, which cost me some time.

"I lost half a tenth or something like that, which would have been enough to be second, but I am happy to be third. It is the clean side of the grid so we should have a better start and hopefully we can go through the first corner, not like Hungary, where we lost the nose. I think we have to finish tomorrow and we are in a perfect position to achieve a good result."

Asked about the start in greater detail, Alonso conceded that there could be drama right from the off.

"It will be a new challenge for all of us, new circuit, no reference at all from the past, so we will see how the first corner is," he added. "Obviously, there will only be one line, because the outside line is very dirty, so it will be difficult for 20 cars to go on the same line so there will be some problems. Hopefully though as we are in the top cars it will be a little bit easier."



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