Fernando Alonso: “It’s better these problems are happening now”

Fernando Alonso retired for the third consecutive race for the first time since his debut Formula 1 season in 2001 as McLaren-Honda’s disappointing reunion season continued in Montreal.

After qualifying fourteenth, Alonso battled hard for position, but ultimately dropped out of the race with a power unit issue whilst running down in sixteenth position, with the Spaniard naturally disappointed to not see the chequered flag.

“Obviously, I’m a little bit sad to have suffered a third consecutive retirement,” insisted Alonso. “I lost power and I had to pit, and that was it.

“Definitely, we need to put some things in order – we know the situation for what it is but what we have to do now is work harder than ever because we want to change the situation more than ever.

“All the developments I know are coming for future races make sense, so I can see positive signs. I think we need to be patient now, and we need to continue to work incredibly hard.”

Though disappointed not to finish, Alonso was reflective after the Canadian Grand Prix, insisting that retiring while the team are not competitive is far better than running closer to the front and losing points due to the retirement.

“It’s been a difficult weekend for both Jenson [Button] and me, with Saturday’s problems and now today’s DNFs,” said Alonso. “Hopefully, though, we’ve learned a lesson, and it’s better that all these problems are happening now, while we’re not yet competitive.

“If, one day, we’re fighting for a podium finish, or for a victory, and we have to retire the car, that will hurt even more than these retirements hurt; so, as I say, we’re learning important lessons every weekend, and gradually we’ll put things right.”