Alonso laments lack of Friday running


Fernando Alonso and Ferrari have lamented their lack of track time during practice at Shanghai on Friday…

Fernando Alonso and Ferrari have lamented their lack of track time during practice at Shanghai on Friday.

While his team-mate Felipe Massa completed a total of 63 laps, Alonso managed only 15 laps in Practice One and a further 17 laps in the second 90-minute session as he found himself in the pits more often than not with hydraulic problems.

“I lost valuable time because of a hydraulic problem, in both sessions, but most of all in the second one,” he said. “Unfortunately, I did not manage to do any long run testing to get an idea of the tyre degradation, but fortunately, Felipe managed to do that on both types, so at least we have a good basis to start from.”

After disappointing performances in the first two races in Australia and Malaysia, Ferrari decided to add new aerodynamic components to Alonso’s car but the lack of mileage means they still don’t have a clear idea about how well the upgrades work.

“As for the new aerodynamic components, it is too early to say if they really produce an advantage,” Alonso said.

“The engineers will now have to study the data carefully, before drawing any definite conclusions as to whether or not we are moving in the right direction in terms of development. From the little I could see, there are no problems – or at least they are very slight – in terms of warm up on the hard tyres, which could be an improvement for managing the tyres in qualifying.

Assistant technical director Pat Fry, who along with team boss Stefano Dominicali and technical director Aldo Costa headed back to Maranello after the Malaysian GP, says a defective component was behind Alonso’s hydraulic woes.

“I think we had more problems today in three hours than we had in the whole fifteen days of winter testing,” he said.

“A shame, because we needed to cover some distance, especially with Fernando, who was experimenting with the latest aerodynamic solutions that they have come up with in Maranello. We will try and make a virtue of necessity and carry out the job of analysing the data with the data we managed to gather.

“The hydraulic problems on car number 5 stem from the same fault, a defective component and we will take action to fix it for the rest of the weekend.”