Alonso: Reliability Key to Title Lead

World Championship leader Fernando Alonso attributed his significant advantage in the points' standing to his Renault team's hard work before the season began, in fielding him with a reliable car from the first round of the year

Alonso: Reliability Key to Title Lead

The Spaniard is leading the drivers' standings by 26 points, ahead of McLaren's Kimi Raikkonen. But while the latter retired from leading a race on three occasions this season, Alonso clinched nine podium finishes - including six wins - in thirteen starts.

"I undoubtedly benefitted from Raikkonen's failures in the first Grands Prix," the Renault driver told Italy's Autosprint. "But I don't like talks of luck, because I don't believe in it and because Renault worked really hard to be ready - performance- and reliability-wise - from the Australian GP.

"Let's not forget that we started with a brand new engine which has shown to be able to immediately cover 1,400 kms.

"Our advantage has been to be ready since the first day, even if now it can't be denied that the McLaren car is faster and more performing then the Renault, but it's a different philosophy on approaching the GPs.

"Our priority now is to finish the races and to be reliable, while they want to be the fastest, even by taking several risks.

"In favour of reliability we've probably lost three or four tenths a lap, as far as engine power and aerodynamic efficiency is concerned, but we're happy with what we have."

Alonso also admitted the R25 was more suited to his driving style than previous cars he had driven with Renault, attributing this to his continuity within the team - but also suggesting the car was designed around his own driving characteristics.

"I feel more integrated with the car," he told the Italian magazine. "I've been at Renault since 2002 and year after year I've noticed that the car had some characteristics that didn't suit me completely, because they obviously had to suit the other team's drivers too.

"Only this year I reached full integration in the way it must be driven. I'd say I feel like a part of the car now."

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