Dennis Cautious ahead of British GP

McLaren boss Ron Dennis is refusing to accept that his team are heading to this weekend's British Grand Prix as favourites for victory

Dennis Cautious ahead of British GP

Although Fernando Alonso took his fifth win of the season in the French Grand Prix, Kimi Raikkonen's pace in climbing from 13th on the grid to finish second, allied to McLaren's stunning pace in testing at the venue last month, has left onlookers in no doubt about the likely form of the team this weekend.

But Dennis is keeping his hopes in touch and is well aware that the close battle with Renault makes it too difficult to make any firm predictions.

"We don't go anywhere with confidence, because F1 is such a complex sport," said Dennis. "We had a fantastic qualifying lap in testing and the team goes there with a decent understanding of what we need to do to be quick."

Dennis remains adamant that Raikkonen would have won the French Grand Prix had he not been forced to start from 13th place on the grid after suffering an engine failure in practice.

His insistence on this fact comes from his belief that Raikkonen's qualifying performance, considering the amount of fuel he had on board, was in Dennis' view the best of his career.

"We have to take the positives out of each weekend, and that was that we have tremendous pace and we feel we had a correct performance," explained Dennis. "Kimi's lap in qualifying was probably the best I've seen of him in all his career. Of course it didn't look that way because of the amount of fuel he was carrying, but that was the reality of his speed.

"I think the mathematics support the idea he could have won, but in fairness to Alonso he paced himself too. We got fastest lap, but the gap after 25 laps was very big and we managed to take half of it away, so basically, I think we should have won."

Although the reality of the situation is that Raikkonen lost a further two points in the World Championship battle to slip to 24 points behind Alonso, Dennis knows it is far too early to give up all hope.

"We certainly had the pace today to win the race, but it's also true we gave away some points in this race. But it's a long Championship and these things can be turned around very quickly."

And making a cheeky reference to the fact that life can throw up surprises, like Juan Pablo Montoya's enforced absence earlier this year after injuring his shoulder, Dennis said: "Maybe we should encourage Alonso to play some more tennis, because that seems to do the trick."

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