Alonso: We had to experiment a little bit on the car

Alonso: We had to experiment a little bit on the car

Alonso: We had to experiment a little bit on the car

Fernando Alonso admitted, after finishing third in the 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix, that Aston Martin had to experiment with their car after a few months of struggle.

Alonso’s podium in Sao Paulo was his first since he finished second in the Dutch Grand Prix at Zandvoort back in August, as since then Aston Martin have been stuck in a downward spiral, hitting rock bottom in Austin and Mexico City which were nightmares for the team.

Aston Martin tried to fix their woes with a major upgrade package in Austin but it seemed to make their AMR23 worse based on what we saw at that race and in Mexico the following race.

However in Sao Paulo, the Silverstone-based Formula 1 team reverted to their previous package while mixing newer parts with older ones which seemed to work.

And despite being lucky in qualifying with rain hitting in the last minutes, nothing about Alonso’s race was lucky as he put in a monumental effort defending from Red Bull’s Sergio Perez to finish ahead of him by 0.053s making the Mexican in the best F1 car in 2023 look like a mediocre package.

Asked in the post race FIA-hosted press conference if the result in Brazil was a boost for Aston Martin, Alonso said: “It is very nice. I think we’ve been struggling for a few months. But the last two races were probably quite painful.

“We had to experiment a little bit on a few things on the car to really understand the direction that we were going and we have to go for next year’s car as well,” he revealed. “So those races were painful, especially Mexico.

Can Aston Martin finish 2023 strongly?

“I think we were very slow as a team, as a performance and yeah, I think it was nice to see everyone in the team very focused, the determination in the team was so nice from the outside to see and to go deep in the analysis and get back stronger here in Interlagos.

“So that was nice to witness from the outside, in a way, and to see everyone united into the same direction. And yeah, I was a little bit concerned, no doubt, for the last few races and maybe the final part of the championship and now, yeah, I cannot wait to go to Vegas. So it’s a very different energy when you have a performing car,” he claimed.

Quizzed whether Aston Martin can maintain the form they showed in Sao Paulo for the final two races of the season, the double F1 Champion responded: “I think so. At least closer to these [Red Bull and McLaren] than Mexico, that’s for sure.

“I think there are a couple of things that have been understood inside the team and the direction to go and we had some hopes for this race and they proved to be right. And now, why not to be competitive in the last two. I don’t know if [it would be] the level of the podium.

“Today, we had a good race. We had Charles, obviously, going off on the formation lap with the problem. We had the Mercedes underperforming, Checo starting at the back, so there were a couple of factors that helped us to be on the podium.

“But, you know, hopefully in the mix, that will be a happy place for us,” the 42-year-old Spaniard concluded.