Alonso Surprised by Gap to Raikkonen

Spaniard Fernando Alonso said he was surprised by his gap to provisional pole setter Kimi Raikkonen in today's qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix

Alonso Surprised by Gap to Raikkonen

The Renault driver was second quickest in the session, but finished nearly half a second behind McLaren's Raikkonen, winner of the last race in Spain.

Alonso himself was also nearly 0.5 seconds ahead of third-placed Mark Webber.

"After Ralf's accident anything was possible, but I think it was maybe too much from our point of view, a surprise, but at the same time we have a good margin to third position," said Alonso.

"Both gaps are surprising but we are on the front row still and that is quite important here in Monaco."

The session was halted with three cars still to run when Toyota's Ralf Schumacher clipped a barrier and speared across the track.

Alonso admitted Ralf's crash caused him trouble on his flying lap.

"It was very difficult in that particular corner," Alonso added. "The rest of the track was good, but that corner I didn't have any information, so when I went there I just avoided the oil and the dirty part and I was in the middle of the track.

"It was different but I don't think I lost time."

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