• Belgian Grand Prix - Qualifying

Alonso unhappy with false position

ESPNF1 Staff
August 27, 2011 « Massa sets sights on Spa podium | »
Fernando Alonso struggled in Q3 and was outqualified by Felipe Massa for only the second time this season © Getty Images
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Fernando Alonso feels he is in a false position after qualifying eighth for the Belgian Grand Prix.

Alonso needed a late lap in Q2 to make it in to the top ten, before struggling to make an impact in Q3 as he found himself affected by traffic and not setting a lap late enough on the drying track. Alonso said that his focus had to be on improving in the race as he feels the "potential" of the Ferrari is much higher than eighth place suggests.

"Eighth is definitely not a good result, but we have to accept it and try to make up for this bad qualifying in tomorrow's race. I am confident because I know the car's true potential is definitely better than this position. We did a good job of managing Q1 and Q2, even if the red flag in the second part put us under a bit of pressure because there were only seven minutes left and at that time I was not through to Q3. In the dry I don't think I could have fought for pole position, but I could have been at least on the front two rows.

"Unfortunately, I hardly ever managed to get a clean lap because on both my second and third laps I found Perez ahead of me and on the last one I had to slow at the entrance to the chicane to let Webber pass, otherwise I might have been penalised. That's how it was, but definitely there is a sense of regret, as I could have got a better place."

Alonso also said that his target was the podium, but admitted that was because he did not know how competitive or otherwise he would be in dry conditions.

"No one is really sure what the relative strengths are down the field: all weekend long we have seen very big gaps of seconds not tenths, depending on when the cars were out on track and also, we don't have an idea about tyre degradation. We will see what happens: I am voting for a dry race and we will do all we can to get on the podium."