Alonso: next two months 'crucial' for McLaren's 2018 F1 ambitions

Fernando Alonso believes the next two months are 'crucial' to McLaren's Formula 1 ambitions in 2018

Alonso: next two months 'crucial' for McLaren's 2018 F1 ambitions

The Spaniard has high hopes about the potential of his team's Renault-powered MCL33, but knows that more development work is needed if it is to have any hopes of challenging the top three teams.

McLaren is working on upgrades for the next two races, and Alonso reckons that the rate of progress it makes over the next eight weeks will decide just how ambitious the team can be with its targets for the remainder of the campaign.

"I think there is still quite a reasonable gap to close with the leaders, but it is up to us now," he said.

"It is up to the team to deliver the performance in the next weeks, the next four, five, six grands prix, and if we are able to bring the performance to the track and close the gap and be in a reasonable distance to pole position and podium finishers.

"Then it is up us to deliver the results on the weekend.

"The next two months are crucial for our hopes in this year's championships.

"But hopefully we can keep improving the car and keep putting more performance.

"If it is not a world championship fight, it will hopefully be some podium positions in the year or can be some regular top five, top six positions.

"So that is something we need to discover and to find out.

"It is probably the first time in the last three years that it is up to us to deliver the results and we will try to do our best."

Although the strength of Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull means finishing on the podium will be a big challenge for McLaren this year, Alonso has no doubts that such a feat is achievable in 2018.

"We were two places from that podium already in Australia and they were very close [in] the last 10 laps, [with Daniel] Ricciardo and Kimi [Raikkonen] fighting together," he said.

"I won two races in 2008 with that Renault - I was on the podium in '09 with the introduction of KERS and with that car we were ninth in the world championship.

"Anything can happen in F1, and if you are close to that point before, sooner or later that opportunity will come and we will take it."

shares
comments
Formula 1 seeks urgent fixes for lack of overtaking in Australia

Previous article

Formula 1 seeks urgent fixes for lack of overtaking in Australia

Next article

Verstappen: Limiting F1 engine modes would be unfair to Mercedes

Verstappen: Limiting F1 engine modes would be unfair to Mercedes
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Fernando Alonso
Teams McLaren
Author Jonathan Noble
How Verstappen and Hamilton’s Imola clash sets the tone for F1’s 2021 title fight Plus

How Verstappen and Hamilton’s Imola clash sets the tone for F1’s 2021 title fight

In Max Verstappen's Formula 1 career to date, he has been cast as the 'pretender', an acknowledged top-line performer without the car to regularly challenge Lewis Hamilton. But that no longer applies in 2021, and the start to the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix was the most telling signal yet of what we can expect from their duel this year

How “overwhelming” McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve Plus

How “overwhelming” McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve

Daniel Ricciardo has found a new lease of life at McLaren – a move that’s been years in the making, as he explains to STUART CODLING…

Formula 1
Apr 20, 2021
The German legend who raced and beat Nuvolari Plus

The German legend who raced and beat Nuvolari

Ninety years ago, Rudolf Caracciola became the first non-Italian to win the epic Mille Miglia. We look at how he stacks up to the most famous pre-war ace Tazio Nuvolari, one of the drivers he beat on that day in 1931

Formula 1
Apr 20, 2021
How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams Plus

How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams

Formula 1’s latest Imola adventure turned into an expensive trip for many teams due to several crashes throughout the weekend. While balancing the books is an added factor in 2021 with the cost cap, a few midfield teams have cashed in early on development investments

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings

A frantic wet race at Imola produced plenty of excitement and drama as drivers scrabbled for grip. Amid the hatful of mistakes and incidents that ensued, who kept their noses cleanest?

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves Plus

How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves

Rain before the start of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix promised to spice up the action, and the race certainly delivered on that. Max Verstappen got the best launch to win from Lewis Hamilton, but both got away with mistakes that could have had serious consequences

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era Plus

The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era

The first in a line of world beaters was designed in a back bedroom and then constructed in a shed. STUART CODLING recalls the Tyrrell 001

Formula 1
Apr 18, 2021
The clues Hamilton’s F1 contract afterthought gives to his future Plus

The clues Hamilton’s F1 contract afterthought gives to his future

The Formula 1 world reacted with surprise when it learned Lewis Hamilton’s long-awaited new Mercedes deal guarantees his presence on the grid only until the end of 2021. Both parties claimed publicly they were happy with the arrangement but, asks MARK GALLAGHER, is there more to it than that?

Formula 1
Apr 17, 2021