Greater Noida: Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso on Thursday nearly threw a challenge to Sebastian Vettel saying he was still capable of snatching the drivers’ title from his Red Bull counterpart.
After sprinting to an early, and at one point substantial championship lead, Alonso is now lagging behind. The Red Bull driver has not only taken a maximum 75-point haul with three straight wins since Singapore Grand Prix five weeks ago, but has also inherited the points lead and now heads the table with 215 to Alonso’s 209. This weekend they will clash again at the Buddh International Circuit (BIC).
Alonso has finished third twice and has retired once while German defending champion Vettel has reeled off three straight wins.
The setbacks, however, have not disheartened Alonso. “With four races to go we have nearly the same points as Vettel and have all the possibilities open for the championship. We are in the situation that we wanted, fighting for the championship until the end,” he said.
“It’s true that in the last few races, Red Bull have been very strong and quick, but we have seen all year that there have been ups and downs for everybody,” Alonso added.
The Spaniard insisted that despite Red Bull’s momentum, he is still in a perfect position to beat Vettel and become the youngest ever three-time champion. “My situation is quite good. Actually, it’s the second best situation for a driver,” said Alonso.
“With four races to go we have nearly the same points as Vettel and I have all the possibilities open for the Championship. We are in the situation that we wanted, fighting for the Championship until the end.”
The Sunday afternoon at the BIC, Alonso made it clear, would be a make-or-break race for him.
“It will be a battle of package. Everyone will have their strong points and weak areas. At the moment Red Bull may have the fastest cars, especially on qualifying days, but we will try to use our strong points.
“Our approach towards a race is the same, there is no difference. We were leading the championship till the last race in Korea, thanks mainly to our consistency.
“We had 16 perfect races and we just need another four perfect races. If we can have another four, I think we will be very close to winning the championship,” said Alonso.
“We were leading the championship up until Korea thanks to our consistency and avoiding making mistakes. We have produced 16 perfect races and now we must produce another four and if we do that, we will be very close to winning the championship.”
Alonso is aware that Ferrari needs to be stronger in qualifying in order to avoid the kind of incidents that forced him out in Belgium and Japan.