Japanese GP: Fernando Alonso unsure where Ferrari stands after Friday

Fernando Alonso believes it is still too early to judge how strong Ferrari will be in the Japanese Grand Prix following Friday practice

Japanese GP: Fernando Alonso unsure where Ferrari stands after Friday

The Spaniard was fifth quickest in the afternoon session after posting the 11th fastest time in the morning.

Although Ferrari was competitive in the British Grand Prix at Silverstone - which is similar to Suzuka in terms of downforce requirements - Alonso admitted he remains unsure about his team's form for the weekend.

"Overall, the feeling is good and I don't think the high temperatures can constitute a problem for the tyres," the championship leader said.

"We have done a lot of races in hot conditions, and not that long ago either, given that Singapore was only a fortnight ago and just like we did there, we will have to learn to manage them, which indeed will be the case for everyone.

"It's hard to say if we can be as competitive here as in Silverstone: that was three months ago and we don't know exactly how our rivals' cars have evolved compared to how much progress we have made.

"We will have to wait until tomorrow, because usually on Saturday the pack gets jumbled up. As for the small updates we have brought here, there's not much to say and we will have to spend more time looking at their behaviour."

Felipe Massa, ninth fastest in the second session, echoed his team-mate's thoughts, although he is convinced there is still room for improvement.

"It's hard to say precisely where we are: what is certain is that many of our rivals seem to be competitive, but as usual, we must wait until tomorrow to get a clearer picture of the situation," Massa said.

"It won't be easy to decide what will be the best strategy. I'd describe the balance of the car as average: even if we didn't match the pace of the others, there is still a lot we can do to improve and we must also take into account the fact that the track changes a lot from one day to the next."

shares
comments
Japanese GP: Hamilton believes Red Bull will be the team to beat

Previous article

Japanese GP: Hamilton believes Red Bull will be the team to beat

Next article

Pirelli would welcome Michael Schumacher as test driver

Pirelli would welcome Michael Schumacher as test driver
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Fernando Alonso
Teams Ferrari
Author Pablo Elizalde
The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Plus

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. BEN ANDERSON looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Plus

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says NIGEL ROEBUCK

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Are we at peak F1 right now? Plus

Are we at peak F1 right now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021 Plus

How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021

The longer Red Bull can maintain a performance edge over Mercedes, the better the odds will be in the team’s favour against the defending world champions. But as the Bahrain Grand Prix showed, many more factors will be critical in the outcome of the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship

Formula 1
Apr 7, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Plus

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021
When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m Plus

When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m

Nikita Mazepin’s Formula 1 debut at the Bahrain Grand Prix lasted mere corners before he wiped himself out in a shunt, but his financial backing affords him a full season. Back in 1993 though, Marco Apicella was an F1 driver for just 800m before a first corner fracas ended his career. Here’s the story of his very short time at motorsport’s pinnacle

Formula 1
Apr 4, 2021
The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes Plus

The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes

Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton took victory at the Bahrain Grand Prix despite, for a change, not having the quickest car. But any hopes of developing its W12 to surpass Red Bull's RB16B in terms of outright speed could not have come at a worse time.

Formula 1
Apr 2, 2021