Fernando Alonso was pleased with his performance in what he described as a stressful qualifying session which will see him lineup eighth for tomorrow’s Styrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring.
The Spaniard, who has spoken of his desire to remain in Formula 1 until 2024 with the Enstone-based team, had shown good pace around the Red Bull Ring with the two times World Champion successfully managing to out-qualify teammate Esteban Ocon with ninth on the grid and his fifth Q3 appearance this season whilst Ocon could only manage 17th on the grid.
Alonso was then promoted to eighth on the grid after Yuki Tsunoda was penalised three places on the grid for blocking Valtteri Bottas in what was Alonso’s best qualifying result at the Red Bull Ring since 2014 when he managed fourth on the grid for Ferrari.
“It was a stressful qualifying with no room for mistakes, thanks to the close gaps and track limits at the last two corners. There is always room to improve, but I am very happy with getting into the top ten again and finishing ninth. It gives us the possibility to score some good points tomorrow. Our forecast suggests it might rain so it is a little bit unknown heading into the race, but we are ready for whatever conditions.”
Nevertheless, Alonso said that today’s performance was the best Q3 of the 2021 season when speaking to Spanish publication Autobild.es.
"We made some changes, some experiments, maybe a little radical after seeing ourselves far behind in FP3; it was the best Q3 of the whole year. It was a good lap, I enjoyed it. I can say that I am already 100%, or well, 100% not yet because it is impossible, but I do notice a big difference with Bahrain or Imola."