Tag Archives: Belgian GP

Fernando Alonso: “We need to be lucky tomorrow…”

Fernando Alonso was quick in the early stages of qualifying in Spa, but the Spaniard didn’t get it right when it mattered in Q3, and thus will start only ninth.

However, he believes he can still emerge from the weekend with a good result.

“Obviously when these conditions come you need to be a little bit lucky as well,” he said. “At the end of the Q3 some people chose to run fuel for the whole session, some people not, some people did extra lap at the end, and suddenly it stopped raining and it was getting very dry. You need to have a mix of things.

“I think we were not in a lucky position today, but we need the luck tomorrow – on Sunday, that’s when the points are given. We expect also a very chaotic race tomorrow with the weather. We need to be lucky tomorrow, and I’m confident we will be.”

Alonso made the point that even if his grid position didn’t reflect it, the Ferrari had looked good in all conditions.

“The car showed today a good performance. In Q1 in wet conditions we were first, in Q2 in dry conditions we were second. So the car seems to perform more or less OK in all conditions, so we are ready for tomorrow, challenging from ninth position.”

Alonso looked back to 2012 for a little inspiration.

“It’s true that we need to pass some people, but also last year Vettel started 10th, finished second, so anything can happen. We need to keep believing that the podium at least is possible, but we need to do a good race and get some luck.

“I remember last year, we were leading the championship, we did a good qualifying, and Vettel was out of Q3. So it was fantastic for our championship hopes. In Turn One he was P5, and I was out of the race.

“It’s not that I hope that he goes out in Turn One, but I mean Sunday for us is always the final result of the weekend, not Saturday, so we need to keep the hopes high because this particular race, this particular circuit, with the overtaking opportunities that you have anything can happen if you have the pace, so we need to prepare for tomorrow perfectly.”

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Kimi Raikkonen Q&A: “I keep making my life difficult on Saturdays…”

Kimi Raikkonen calls Spa his favourite circuit, and the Finn has a great record in the Belgian GP. In order to get his title challenge back on track he really needs to finish ahead of Sebastian Vettel when action resumes. Can he do it? Here’s a Q&A provide by Lotus today.

You were second in Budapest before the summer break; how good would it be to go one step better at Spa?

“Usually I’ve achieved a good result at the Belgian Grand Prix, but what has happened there before doesn’t help me right now. Of course, it doesn’t cause any harm either and it would be great to win at Spa for a fifth time. Extra points are always good and if you win the race no-one scores more points than you.”

How has your history been at the circuit?

“For me there have only been good memories from Spa and it’s great to go racing there. You can’t get the same kind of a feeling anywhere else. It’s great to race with a modern racing car at a proper circuit which has such a great tradition.”

What are the challenges of the track and should it suit the strengths of the E21?

“Spa offers very challenging high-speed corners and you need to get the right set-up for the car. As we’ve seen so many times this year, a good grid position is extremely important. It will be very decisive at Spa too, even though it is may be easier to overtake there than at some other tracks. It’s crucial to have a good car aerodynamically to tackle the fast corners and it’s a long lap, so to get the right time you really need to maintain the best rhythm. So much depends on the qualifying result, so we need to find a decent set-up on Friday and Saturday and have a solid qualifying session on Saturday afternoon. I don’t know how it will suit our car this year. Last year we were not very strong there. I think we know the reasons and for sure our car is better this year, but is it good enough to be fighting for a win? We will see on Sunday.”

Why has Spa been so good to you in the past?

“Sometimes there are certain circuits where everything seems to run smoothly, and then there are other circuits where I have no luck at all. Of course, we will do our very best to win this race. I have been on the top step of the podium a few times at Spa and I want to be there again.”

Does this make Spa one of your favourite tracks?

“I bet every driver likes Spa. For me it is the greatest racing circuit in the world. It is my favourite place. I have liked the place since my first ever visit there in 2000 with Formula Renault.”

How are you feeling about your championship position?

“I am now back in second which was a good way to enter the summer break. I finished ahead of Seb in Hungary so obviously scored more points than him there. To beat him, we need to be winning races and if we keep finishing second like we’ve done many times this year it’s probably not going to be enough for the championship, but you never know what might happen.”

Where can improvements be found?

“Well, obviously I keep making my life difficult on Saturdays in qualifying so then we pay a price, but we still have a good car in the race. Now we have tyres that are a little bit different we have to understand exactly how to use them. We made progress in Budapest so it should be easier in Spa, but that will be the same for everyone. To win, it’s always better to be starting near the front.”

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