• Canadian GP - Qualifying

Alonso pins hopes on tyre strategy

ESPN Staff
June 7, 2014 « Vettel braced for difficult race | Raikkonen bemoans 'edgy' Ferrari »
Fernando Alonso acknowledges the fans from behind the wheel on Saturday © Sutton Images

Fernando Alonso thinks Ferrari's only chance of beating Red Bull and Williams in Canada could be in unlocking a superior tyre strategy after qualifying seventh.

After showing encouraging signs on Friday, Ferrari was clearly off the pace of Red Bull and Williams in qualifying, whose battle for the second two rows was separated by just 0.04s. Alonso was three tenths off Daniel Ricciardo and says he did not harbour ambitions of making it onto the first three rows.

"I think it was the limit," Alonso said. "The lap was very, very good. It was surprisingly good. When I crossed the line there were six laps faster than us and they were all through qualifying, it's not that in Q3 they were suddenly there. We were 12th in Q1 after the first run so it was a difficult Saturday for us and it means we were not fast enough.

"At the moment we have a surprisingly good Williams here and Red Bull in qualifying were very fast, they were very good. We want to fight for second place in the constructors' and its Red Bull in front of us, so we would like to finish in front of them tomorrow if we can and we need to to keep fighting in this championship."

Alonso says he is not surprised by Ferrari falling away in qualifying and believes the temperature on Sunday could hold the key to a challenge to the teams in front.

"After seven races we've been in the top three all Fridays, I think. We approach the race weekend in a different way compared to our competitors, we are always very competitive on Friday and then back to the normal level on Saturday.

"The first two corners do not give you the possibility to be aggressive or to attack in a way like Barcelona or Bahrain where you have heavy braking and can risk. Probably the best thing is to study the temperatures and see which tyres work better with these temperature.

"Yesterday it seemed quite clear the soft was the tyre for the race, but today with the hotter temperatures the supersoft is performing quite well, so if that is the case tomorrow, we may switch to the supersoft in a race situation, and try to add one extra pitstop. But we need to do something because we need to finish in front of them."

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