Fernando Alonso says he was forced to do a ‘kamikaze ride’ in Canada after suffering an engine problem early in the race that turned it into a matter of survival.
The two-time world champion started a Grand Prix from the front row for the first time since 2012, with only Max Verstappen in front of him last Sunday. Despite this good starting position, however, he only crossed the line in seventh. In addition, Alonso received a five-second time penalty after the game for drifting off his line too often in an attempt to hold Valtteri Bottas behind him. As a result, he eventually entered the books as ninth.
Asked about where it went wrong, Alonso says: “The engine. That’s the only answer. We had an engine problem from lap 20 that put the energy out on the straights very early, as soon as we came out of the corner. We tried to solve it but it didn’t work luckily we didn’t drop out and got a few more points but up to that point we were fighting for a podium at the start of the race i felt strong against Lewis [Hamilton]† We didn’t have the pace of Max [Verstappen] in Charles [Sainz].”
Hamilton eventually crossed the line in third, so Alonso is disappointed with what could have been: “We were able to control Lewis and Mercedes and then the virtual safety cars came. Luck or no luck, that affected the race. Maybe we were still ahead. “I could fight for third or fourth, but when the engine problem set in it was all about survival. Trying to get DRS and go through the corners with kamikaze, because after that the DRS was my only chance on the straight.”