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Sin GP - Race weekend recap - Alonso

Fernando Alonso continues to creep spectacularly to his third World Championship.

The Spaniard's Ferrari has not been the class of the field for quite some time, if it ever was this season.

While team-mate Felipe Massa continues to race an identical car amongst the mid-pack teams Fernando Alonso continues to stand on the podium, collecting consistent points hauls while his other championship contenders trip over themselves in a bid to catch him.

In Singapore the status quo was unchanged.

Throughout the free practice sessions, Alonso was quick, but not sensationally quick. In free practice one he was a second slower than Sebastian Vettel, while in FP2 and FP3 he remained half a second off the pace.

So going into qualifying it wasn't much of a surprise to see Alonso qualifying in fifth. He might have closed the gap to Vettel to just three tenths. But by the end of Saturday, McLaren and Lewis Hamilton looked the class of the field with Alonso + 0.854 seconds.

“Today, pole position was absolutely out of our grasp: Hamilton was on another planet... We must settle for this fifth place but that doesn’t mean we are not hoping to improve on it tomorrow: our target is the podium. The result pretty much matches what we expected after yesterday, given that right from the afternoon we were not particularly brilliant. Alonso told formula1.com on Saturday.

As ever the target for Alonso was met, with Hamilton retiring from the lead of the race with a gearbox failure and the Williams of Pastor Maldonado once again demonstrating that for all his one lap pace in qualifying, the Williams driver simply cannot replicate those performances into a race.

With Alonso gaining two positions from both men retiring, Alonso once again finished on the podium. The eighth time this season.

But whilst it could have been a lot worse, with Hamilton, who had been second in the title picture retiring from the lead, the Spaniard knows his hands are slipping from the title.

“In the end it went well, but we definitely can’t go on like this. It can’t always be the case that my closest rival retires, as has happened in the last two races and we can’t think of carrying on to the end of the season with qualifying sessions like yesterday’s, when our performance was almost a second off the best. On track we manage to make the most of what we have, making few or no mistakes, thanks to great work from the team: for that alone we deserve to be where we are in the classification. Today, we pulled out an advantage over three of our four main competitors, which is positive. Probably this has been the most difficult circuit for us: we will find partially similar characteristics in Korea and Abu Dhabi, but I hope that by the time we get there, we will have found a way of improving the car.

Alonso now holds a 29 point lead over Sebastian Vettel.








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The Journalist

Writer: Red5 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday September 25 2012

Time: 11:00AM

 

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