Apr.13 (GMM) The double time champion Fernando Alonso says reigning champion
and current title leader Sebastian Vettel is presently out of reach given his
existing form. Vettel has enjoyed a wonderful start to the season, with two
poles and two wins in as many races so far.
The Spaniard finished a fourth place in the Australian GP and a sixth in Malaysia.
"As we had already seen in Australia, once again in Malaysia, our race pace was
much better than that in qualifying," said Alonso on Ferrari's website.
"In Sepang, both Felipe and I were running at a pace good enough to get to the
podium and that was an important indication, even if we did not end up getting
all we could have done. Clearly, I would like to always be fighting for the win but,
at the moment, one car, Vettel's Red Bull, seems to be out of reach."
Alonso, who reckoned he should have finished in second place in Malaysia, said he
wanted to move on from the Sepang event, although he admitted finishing on the
podium would have been good for the morale of the team following a difficult start
to the year.
"I was disappointed not to get to the podium in Malaysia, as it was within my reach
and it would have been a great result. It would also have been useful in terms of
being a nice morale booster," he said.
"Unfortunately, things did not work out the way we wanted and we paid a very
heavy price for the failure on the system that runs the moveable rear wing.
I know that the engineers, with whom I've been in touch a lot over these past days,
have discovered the problem and fixed it. If the system had worked, I could
comfortably have got past Hamilton on the pit straight and I would not have found
myself having to fight him wheel to wheel and taking risks.
"What happened is part of racing and you have to accept it: I was quicker than him
and so I had to try and pass, otherwise I would have been caught by those behind us.
As for the penalty I was given, I already said on Sunday night in Sepang,
I don't want to talk about it because it changes nothing."
The Ferrari will have some aero updates in Shanghai this weekend, including a new
front wing, but Alonso suggested he is still keeping his expectations in check.
"Our aim in this grand prix will be similar to the one in Malaysia, which means to
make the best of qualifying and try to exploit any opportunity that comes our
way during the race," he said.
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