Fernando Alonso insists his decision to attempt a final flying qualifying lap for the Turkish Grand Prix on harder tyres was not the reason why he was forced to contend with fourth position on the grid.

While Felipe Massa, Lewis Hamilton and Kimi Raikkonen hedged their bets on the softer of the two choices, Alonso decided to try and get the most from the harder rubber, which had to that point produced several strong laps already due to their ability retain grip to the end of the lap.

However, the risk appeared not to pay off when he could only manage the fourth fastest time, a disappointment given the Spaniard had gone into the top ten shootout having recorded the fastest lap of the weekend during the second phase of qualifying.

Nonetheless, Alonso blamed traffic for being unable to get enough heat into the tyres during his out lap, leaving him floundering when it came to completing his final qualifying time. Despite missing out though, Alonso was pleased with his result.

"I am happy with my qualifying today. I made the decision to go out on prime Bridgestone Potenzas for my final flying lap, but I do not think this was the wrong decision. That final lap was actually quite stressful as our planned timing was for me to run at the very end of the session with only a couple of seconds left to cross the line. Then I was stuck in traffic, so all these factors probably played a role in me not improving my lap time and coming fourth today."

Alonso is now setting his sights on race day, coyly hinting he is running a strategy that is more indicative of his fourth place starting position, rather than his choice of tyres.

"However I think it will be a very exciting race, and I am feeling confident as it is possible to overtake at this circuit. I think we have a good strategy, and the car will be strong in the race."

 

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