'Happy' Fernando Alonso hoping to benefit from potentially chaotic wet race

'Happy' Fernando Alonso hoping to benefit from potentially chaotic wet race

McLaren introduced what it had labelled its "real" 2018 vehicle in Barcelona this weekend, with several upgrades that Alonso praised after Friday practice.

However, his best was still over 1.5 seconds slower than the pole time set by Lewis Hamilton and the man from Oviedo was just under a second behind the Red Bulls, powered by the same Renault engine.

Alonso admitted the result left him with mixed feelings, happy that McLaren has taken a step forward but aware that the gap to the front is still significant.

McLaren's Fernando Alonso says he's happy after qualifying 8th for the Spanish GP but admits the team need to push on with development of the vehicle. "P8 is a good position, I've been P13 the last three qualifying sessions", two-time world champion Alonso told Sky Sports F1. "I hope these new parts will help us to move things in the right direction".

Fernando Alonso expressed his dismay at the performance gap between himself and the top three teams in qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix. In another way, this auto is supposed to be the Australian Grand Prix package and that delay on bringing the first improvements and having them not in the first race, having them here, probably put us in a hard position in the first couple of races. "Now we need to bring more things as quickly as possible". It's a step in the right direction and we need to keep improving like this in the next races. We are the only team completing the full four races with both cars.

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He added that he had hoped to have had a similarly competitive auto from the start of the season.

"Definitely I think this package is making me happy. In another way, this vehicle, is supposed to be the Australian Grand Prix package", he told Sky.

"This package is making me happy, but in another way, this auto, is supposed to be the Australian Grand Prix package - that delay, on the first improvement, and not having it at the first races, but having it here, has probably put us in a hard position in the first races".

The McLaren F1 Team racer will start eighth on the grid on Sunday, missing out on seventh to Kevin Magnussen by less than a tenth of a second, but after missing out on the top ten in the opening four races of the season, Alonso feels the team has made a step forward this weekend.

"Hopefully I will put on a good show for the fans tomorrow".

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