Alonso: Potential Hungary F1 Turn 1 ‘trouble’ requires clever start

Fernando Alonso says being “clever” into Turn 1 of Formula 1’s 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix will earn “positions for free” should Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton collide once again.

Alonso: Potential Hungary F1 Turn 1 ‘trouble’ requires clever start

The Alpine driver qualified ninth - one place and 0.06s behind team-mate Esteban Ocon - in Budapest after enduring what he reckoned to be a supposed drop off in the Pirelli soft tyre performance in Q3 compared to the previous set he had used for his Q2 flying lap.

Alonso still heralded a “very important Saturday” at a tight circuit where it is notoriously “difficult to overtake” and reckoned his ninth spot would provide a greater benefit off the line, the Spaniard set to launch from the clean side of the grid, which is “more noticeable” in Hungary.

But he warned of the caution needed into the first corner should third-starting Verstappen and polesitter Hamilton clash in consecutive races following their controversial first-lap collision in the British Grand Prix earlier this month.

Double world champion Alonso reckoned drivers could gain positions “for free” if they were “clever” and were able to avoid getting involved in “a little bit of action” at the front.

He said: “I think it is going to be hotter in front of us.

“We will try to recover places. I think we can.

“In my case, I start on the clean side.

"This is one of the circuits that it is more noticeable starting on the clean side.

“My wish is to finish a little bit higher in the first lap.

“But I think we need to be careful because in front of us...I think something could happen tomorrow again.

Fernando Alonso, Alpine A521

Fernando Alonso, Alpine A521

Photo by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

"We have Max starting on the [quicker] red [sidewall soft] tyre, Lewis on the yellow [medium compound]. We have [Sergio Perez, fourth], [Pierre] Gasly [fifth] also.

“Behind them, [Lando] Norris and [Charles] Leclerc, which are some of the best starters. The first corner is going to be a little bit of action.
“We need to be clever to stay out of any trouble and benefit from whatever happens in front.

“We want a clean first lap because maybe there are some positions that come for free.”

Alonso did explain the need to be wary with Daniel Ricciardo starting the race in 11th, the McLaren driver therefore gaining free choice for his starting tyre compound.

But Alonso rated his chances of scoring a sixth points-paying finish in a row, a run of form stretching back to a sixth-place score in Baku in June.

He said: "I will love to be in the points tomorrow - whatever position but in the points.

“We've been scoring for many, many races already.

“We start in eighth and ninth so maybe we are not too far from what we could achieve.

“But there are cars behind us, especially Ricciardo starting 11th, probably with a harder compound etc, that will be difficult to manage to stay in front of him.”

shares
comments

Related video

Hamilton hopes Red Bull reflects on "unacceptable" remarks

Previous article

Hamilton hopes Red Bull reflects on "unacceptable" remarks

Next article

Russell felt "car was driving me" after first Q1 exit of F1 2021 season

Russell felt "car was driving me" after first Q1 exit of F1 2021 season
Load comments
The key details that boosted Red Bull and held back Hamilton in Verstappen’s USA victory Plus

The key details that boosted Red Bull and held back Hamilton in Verstappen’s USA victory

As the 2021 Formula 1 title battle winds towards its climax, the United States GP added another thrilling act in the Lewis Hamilton-Max Verstappen battle. Although Hamilton aced the start, Verstappen and Red Bull took the initiative with strategy and were richly rewarded, despite Mercedes' best efforts as the race went down to the wire

US Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

US Grand Prix Driver Ratings

On a baking hot afternoon at the returning Circuit of the Americas, Formula 1 drivers were tested to their limits. As the pressure on the title contending squads reaches an ever-greater level of intensity, the foremost challengers again showed their class, but were outshone by a standout drive from the upper midfield

Why F1's misunderstood party animal will thrive in retirement Plus

Why F1's misunderstood party animal will thrive in retirement

Three years on from Kimi Raikkonen's last Grand Prix victory at Austin, he is now six races away from ending the longest Formula 1 career in history. His friend and former Ice1 Racing rally team PR man ANTHONY PEACOCK explains why there’s nobody quite like the 2007 world champion and why F1 will miss him (but he won’t miss it)

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert Plus

The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert

It's 50 years since Jo Siffert was killed in his prime at Brands Hatch. The Swiss scored just two world championship wins in a Formula 1 career spent largely with privateer teams, but showed on numerous occasions in single-seaters and in sportscars with Porsche that he could beat any of the best drivers of his era given the right equipment

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: How Red Bull’s ace has become F1 champion material Plus

Verstappen exclusive: How Red Bull’s ace has become F1 champion material

As Red Bull and Honda go all-out for victory in the Japanese engine manufacturer’s last season of its latest Formula 1 dalliance, Max Verstappen finds himself thrust into a compelling title fight with Lewis Hamilton. He told OLEG KARPOV about his evolution into a world championship contender and why Red Bull's no compromise ethos suits him down to the ground

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021
How Mercedes went from Austin practice domination to "very tight at the front" with Red Bull Plus

How Mercedes went from Austin practice domination to "very tight at the front" with Red Bull

Mercedes has been on a roll of late in the ultra-tight fight to win the 2021 Formula 1 world championship. It started off well in practice at Austin for this weekend’s US Grand Prix, but Red Bull got closer as Friday unfolded and even seemed to find an edge in one critical area of what seems set to be another close contest

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021
The six critical factors that could hand F1 2021 glory to Hamilton or Verstappen Plus

The six critical factors that could hand F1 2021 glory to Hamilton or Verstappen

The 2021 Formula 1 title battle is finely poised with six races remaining, as just six points separate championship leader Max Verstappen from seven-time champion Lewis Hamilton. In such a closely-fought season, the outcome could hinge on several small factors playing the way of Red Bull or Mercedes

Formula 1
Oct 22, 2021
Can Whitmarsh appointment help Aston succeed where its F1 rivals failed? Plus

Can Whitmarsh appointment help Aston succeed where its F1 rivals failed?

Aston Martin owner Lawrence Stroll is determined to make the group a billion-dollar business. MARK GALLAGHER analyses his latest play – bringing former McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh into the fold

Formula 1
Oct 22, 2021