Alonso says team misunderstanding cost him in Q3

Sam Cooper
Fernando Alonso speaks into a microphone. Monaco, May 2022.

Fernando Alonso said a misunderstanding between he and the team could potentially have cost him a higher qualifying spot than seventh at the British Grand Prix.

The Spaniard crossed the line with three seconds to spare of the Q3 session but was unable to improve on his time during his final lap.

As a result, he will start Sunday’s grand prix in P7, behind Lewis Hamilton and Lando Norris, but the the 40-year-old was left wondering what could have been.

Alonso said a miscommunication between he and the team meant he had drained his battery before his final lap.

“I felt it was time to deliver again, some risky laps,” Alonso told Sky Sports F1. “At the end, we misunderstood each other on the radio with the team and we didn’t know how much time was left for the final push.

“So I crossed the line, I think, with a three-second margin but with no battery because I had emptied the battery on the previous lap.

“So effectively I crossed the line first, not last, on the previous lap and I think it cost me maybe fourth or fifth. But with Lewis, with George, around me I think that’s unrealistic to qualify in front of them, so I think we are more in our natural position [of] seventh, eighth.”

Alonso admitted outpacing the Mercedes could be a step too far for Alpine on Sunday but said a crash or DNF up front could open the door for him.

“It feels good in dry and wet, good to fight for seventh or eighth,” he said.

“I think we start in our natural position. Let’s see if there is some accident in front of us that we can benefit [from]. If not, [it] is more [to] try secure those points and keep an eye on the people behind.”

Alpine arrived at Silverstone with an upgraded A522 and team principal Otmar Szafnauer said it was the only realistic place to do so.

Szafnauer told Sky Sports: “If this upgrade wasn’t to be taken to Silverstone from Enstone, we probably wouldn’t have done it.

“So are our spares will be driven up there on Saturday morning – hopefully we won’t need them.

“Had it been any further we probably wouldn’t have upgraded the car.

“So without ample spares and risk of crashing, we wouldn’t have done it. But yeah, we are lucky to be next door.”