• Chinese GP

Alonso 'surprised' by podium

ESPN Staff
April 20, 2014 « Telemetry failure nearly cost me - Rosberg | Misunderstanding led to team order refusal - Vettel »
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Fernando Alonso was surprised he had the pace to score a podium at the Chinese Grand Prix but is confident Ferrari has made a good step forward since Bahrain.

After Ferrari struggled in Bahrain, finishing ninth and tenth, team principal Stefano Domenicali resigned and the team arrived in China under new management. Alonso said he was not expecting to score a podium so soon after Bahrain, but is confident the team has made progress.

"It was a good weekend and we did improve the car a little bit compared to the first three races, so we felt more competitive," he said. "Now being here on the podium is some kind of surprise for us, a nice surprise! I'm happy with the podium finish today and now I'm third in the championship behind these two guys [Hamilton and Rosberg]. We didn't have the start to the season that we would like, but at the end of the day we are still in the fight."

Alonso bumped wheels with the Williams Felipe Massa at the start and admitted he was concerned about damage.

"It was a big contact and I asked on the radio if they could check the car because it felt okay but I don't know how it looks from the outside. It was okay and we were very lucky to finish the race. Hopefully the next one will be a clean start."

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