Fernando Alonso, known for his candid remarks, once famously dubbed his Honda power unit as a “GP2 engine.” However, this time, his criticism came amidst a challenging race in Singapore, where he ultimately finished 11th. Alonso’s race took a bumpy turn as he received a five-second penalty for an error that led him to cross the pit entry. He also faced a significant pit stop delay and grappled with a car that had an issue with a dislodged aerodynamic part. This race marked Alonso’s first non-points finish in 2023, a tough blow for the team as he was their sole representative following Lance Stroll’s qualifying accident.
Team principal Krack weighed in on Alonso’s frustration, stating, “As a team, we need to acknowledge if a driver is critical. Obviously, there is not the performance that he’s expecting, and that he’s used to, and then I think it’s okay. We want them to give everything, and then it’s normal that also sportsmen react like that. So it’s not a problem.”
Alonso had been on track for a respectable sixth-place finish in Singapore before things went awry. Krack explained, “We thought we had a good rhythm. I think we knew upfront that it would be difficult to compete with the front-runners. So I think on the medium tires, everything ran pretty solid. Then after the safety car, we fitted the hard tires, and we struggled a bit more, we need to understand why. To a point where we said when the virtual safety car came, we were not sure that we could go the full distance with a decent level of performance.”
The race’s turning point came with the penalty and a botched pit stop, leaving Alonso in a less than favorable position. As Krack summed it up, “And we decided to change, and then the sequence of events, the penalty, the pit stop went wrong, and then we came out in a really bad position. And that was it at the end.”
Interestingly, Alonso had shown promise during Friday practice in Singapore, particularly in long runs. Krack acknowledged the need for a comprehensive review of what went wrong over the weekend, saying, “We need to really understand what happened. We also have a little bit of damage on the car that we need to understand, how much it did. We had an issue on one of the suspension fairings, an aero part. We saw it on the pit stop, and we saw it in the pictures.”
Singapore’s unique challenges, such as running in close traffic, added to the complexity of the race. Krack emphasized, “Singapore is also somewhere where you run close in traffic all the time, which is affecting always a lot, and you don’t know how much are others saving, how much are people managing? So this is one of the most difficult races always to understand.”
Regarding Alonso’s pit entry mishap that triggered the penalty, Krack maintained a cautious stance, noting, “We need to review that because there are some settings to be made, if they were made, and if he was also reminded to do them. So I will be careful about [calling it a] mistake until we have analyzed that.”
In the fast-paced world of Formula 1, even the most seasoned drivers and teams can encounter setbacks, and Alonso’s candid criticism, in this case, serves as a reminder of the high stakes and intense competition in the sport.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Alonso’s Criticism
Q: What prompted Fernando Alonso’s criticism during the F1 Singapore GP?
A: Fernando Alonso’s criticism during the F1 Singapore GP stemmed from a challenging race where he received a five-second penalty for crossing the pit entry, encountered a pit stop delay, and grappled with a car issue involving a dislodged aerodynamic part. These frustrations led him to express his disappointment in the performance.
Q: How did the Aston Martin team respond to Alonso’s criticism?
A: The Aston Martin team, through their principal Krack, acknowledged Alonso’s frustration and stated that it’s normal for drivers to be critical when performance falls short of expectations. They emphasized their commitment to having drivers give their all, even in challenging situations.
Q: Why was the Singapore GP significant for Fernando Alonso in 2023?
A: The 2023 Singapore GP was significant for Fernando Alonso as it marked the first race in the season where he failed to score points. This was a notable contrast to his previous performances and added to his frustration during the event.
Q: What factors contributed to Alonso’s promising start but ultimately disappointing finish in the race?
A: Alonso had a promising start in the Singapore GP but encountered difficulties when the team switched to hard tires after a safety car period. The exact reasons for their struggles on the hard tires needed further analysis. Additionally, issues with car damage and the unique challenges of the Singapore circuit played a role in the disappointing finish.
Q: How did the team view Alonso’s pit entry mishap that resulted in a penalty?
A: The team expressed caution regarding Alonso’s pit entry mishap, as they needed to review whether certain settings were made and if he was reminded to do them. They refrained from labeling it a “mistake” until a thorough analysis was conducted.