Fernando Alonso: “Points tomorrow are our target”

Fernando Alonso will start fifteenth on Sunday - Credit: Steven Tee/McLaren

Fernando Alonso insists points are the aim for the McLaren Honda Formula 1 Team during Sunday’s Russian Grand Prix despite the Spaniard qualifying down in fifteenth on Saturday.

Alonso felt his lap to get out of the first phase of qualifying was ‘very good’, but once through to the second phase he was unable to advance any further, ending up almost a second shy of getting through to Q3, and 0.643 seconds down on fourteenth placed Kevin Magnussen.

The Spaniard feels they will need a lot of luck to break into the points on Sunday, but knows his own driving and the strategy from his team also need to be the right one to be in contention when it matters.

“It was a good qualifying in terms of the performance of the chassis and aerodynamics – the balance of the car felt quite good; quite grippy in the corners. I felt competitive, and my Q1 lap was very good,” said Alonso.

“The tyres are tricky around here, as you need to warm them up quite hard, but everything went okay today. The sunny weather helped – and I think it’s going to be a good tyre for the race.

“Points tomorrow are our target, we need to have a good start, a good strategy, and a good race. Even then, we won’t be fast enough to get into in the points so we’ll need some help from the guys ahead of us.”