Alonso looking for Qualifying rain after ‘difficult’ Friday in Interlagos

Credit: Charles Coates/McLaren

Fernando Alonso believes that the McLaren Honda Formula 1 Team will have more chance of making into Qualifying 3 for the tenth time in 2017 if the threat of wet weather materialises.

Alonso said that Friday at the Autódromo José Carlos Pace was “more difficult” than McLaren first expected, despite the Spaniard finishing both sessions inside the top ten, staying around one second off the ultimate pace – set both times by the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula 1 Team‘s Lewis Hamilton.

Alonso lost track time in the afternoon, courtesy of a pressure issue with the Honda power unit.

“Today was more difficult than we’d expected.” revealed Alonso, who looks set to take part in the 2018 24 Hours of Le Mans for the Toyota GAZOO Racing outfit as he searches for the second part of a desired Triple Crown.

“We had some problems in the first session, then a PU pressure issue in the second session. We lost some valuable track time, and in the end we didn’t manage to complete our programme.

“We tried to carry out the priority items on our run-plan, and we’re more or less happy with the outcome.”

Furthermore, Alonso thinks that there is more performance to come from the car in the run-up to Qualifying, and says that the battle to get into the top ten will be hard in dry conditions.

“There’s still a little more to come from the car tomorrow – some tuning on the set-up – so we’ll see what we can do,” said Alonso.  “Times are very close here, and if it stays dry making it into Q3 is going to be tight.

“We’ll have more chance if it rains.”