Alonso remains positive despite problem filled opening day at Monza

Fernando Alonso (ESP) Ferrari F2012 stops on track in the first practice session. Formula One World Championship, Rd 13, Italian Grand Prix, Practice, Monza, Italy, Friday 7 September 2012.

Fernando Alonso parks his Ferrari out on track during free practice at Monza

Sep.8 (F1 Media) A blown engine, brake and gear problems all in the morning and afternoon free practice sessions at Monza, failed to sway Fernando Alonso from the belief that Ferrari can enjoy a good weekend at the team’s home grand prix, in front of their passionate tifosi.

Fernando lonso in the Ferrari pit garage at Monza“Almost everything happened, with various mechanical problems and we did not manage to test everything we wanted, but all the parts that failed can be changed and thanks to Felipe we have all the information we need to do well in qualifying and the race,” said Alonso who finished the day in third place on the timesheet, marginally behind the twin McLarens of fastest man Lewis Hamilton and team-mate Jenson Button. “Even if today was complicated, it was still positive: it’s good that everything happened today, because we must try and avoid any problems tomorrow and Sunday.”

Alonso said he was happy with the performance of his car during the first two practice sessions and that his team’s competitiveness was at a better level than at Spa last weekend.

Fernando Alonso (ESP) Ferrari F2012. Formula One World Championship, Rd 13, Italian Grand Prix, Practice, Monza, Italy, Friday 7 September 2012.“I am optimistic about the car balance, which we did not have to change between FP1 and FP2,” he said. “Compared to Spa, here we are on the pace. Maybe we have a bit more downforce and make up a bit of time at the two Lesmos and the second chicane, while we are losing out in the first sector with the two long straights. We will analyse these details this evening and tomorrow we will try and improve also in terms of top speed, which was probably our weak point today.”

Team-mate Felipe Massa got through his full programme and agreed that his fourth place on the the Friday timesheet this afternoon was a good sign.

“A very positive day because I managed to make the most of the track time, completing the full programme we had planned,” he said. “I am also pleased with my lap times, as I was always up there with the quickest cars in both sessions. We will be trying to improve the car set-up still further tomorrow, but I am confident for the rest of the weekend.”

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