Alonso says DNF cost him a podium

Fernando Alonso says his retirement from the Hungarian Grand Prix cost him his first podium finish of the season

Alonso says DNF cost him a podium

The Renault driver, starting from pole position, was leading the race until his first pitstop, when a problem with his right front tyre ended up with the wheel flying off his car less than a lap later.

Alonso, already suffering from a problem with his car's fuel pump, was forced to pit again and retire moments later.

The Spaniard was convinced the problem cost him a podium finish.

"Today we missed an opportunity to finish on the podium," said Alonso. "I made a good start and the car was quick during my first stint, but then we had a problem at my first stop fitting the right front wheel to the car.

"When I left the pits there was a lot of vibration and it felt like I had a puncture, but then a few corners later the wheel flew off my car.

"I made it back to the pits to replace it, but then the problem I'd had with my fuel pump since lap two returned and started to get worse so we had to retire the car.

"It's a shame that we missed this chance, but these things happen in racing and I'm trying to look on the bright side because we saw this weekend that the car is very competitive.

"I'm now looking ahead to the next race in Valencia, where I hope we can build on the promise we have shown."

Team-mate Nelson Piquet completed a disappointing day for Renault, the Brazilian finishing down in 12th.

"I made a very good start and managed to overtake several cars, but then I was always stuck behind somebody, which didn't help my race," he said.

"I was also a bit unlucky with the strategy and I think my race would have worked out a lot better if I had been in some clean air. The car was good today and I'm glad that I benefited from the new updates this weekend."

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