Alonso not expecting Monza Q3 appearance despite strong Friday pace

Fernando Alonso - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Fernando Alonso had a better than expected day at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza on Friday after finishing seventh fastest in second practice, although his opening session was affected by more mechanical issues.

The McLaren-Honda driver was relieved the issues that curtailed his morning session was not significant and will not cost him more grid penalties, and felt that some of the prototype parts the team evaluated on his car were interesting.

“We didn’t have perfect reliability today – there are still some concerns here and there – but it wasn’t anything really significant, which is good news,” revealed Alonso. “Nonetheless, we need to take care of every last detail because we don’t want to lose out on scoring some points when it matters most. 

“It was a positive day. We need to go away and look at what we’ve tested today – we ran some interesting prototype parts that are being evaluated for the future – but we’re reasonably happy.”

Alonso admitted that he did not expect both himself and team-mate Jenson Button to finish inside the top ten in practice, and does not believe they have a realistic opportunity to make it into the top ten shootout in qualifying on Saturday.

“We didn’t expect to get both cars into the top 10 at a high-speed track like this, but we need to keep our feet on the ground as we know that we tend to slip back a little on Saturday afternoons,” said Alonso.

“We wouldn’t realistically expect to get into Q3 tomorrow; so, if we do, it’ll be a nice surprise.”