• German Grand Prix

Red Bull 'a little bit ahead' - Alonso

ESPN Staff
July 19, 2012 « 'We still need to do better' - Webber | Hamilton hopes upgrades will reignite title challenge »
Fernando Alonso arrives at Hockenheim with a 13 point championship lead over Mark Webber and 29 points ahead of Sebastian Vettel © Press Association
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Fernando Alonso says that Red Bull is "a little bit ahead in terms of performance" and that Ferrari needs to catch up if he wants to retain his championship lead.

Mark Webber's victory at the British Grand Prix cut Alonso's lead to 13 points in the drivers' championship as Webber overhauled the Ferrari in the final stint of the race. Alonso said that his outlook since taking the championship lead hasn't changed because he's never had a cushion and sees Red Bull as having the biggest car on the grid.

"I see things more or less the same as the last four or five grands prix," Alonso said. "Whoever is leading the championship is not a big factor at the moment because everything is changing so quickly and positions at the weekend are never the same; there's always a bit of a mix. It's just a number that you happen to be in the table. So I approach this grand prix exactly the same as we approach the last four or five, trying to maximise what we have in our hands, trying to test some new updates in the car and hoping they work.

"It seems that Red Bull are a little bit quicker than everybody else - not for two or three grands prix, I think from Bahrain. They didn't get pole position in Barcelona and in Silverstone, the rest was all Red Bull. So the last six grands prix they have pole position in the last four or five. So definitely they are a little bit ahead in terms of performance so we need to catch up."

Leading the championship despite started the year in what was a much inferior car to the likes of Red Bull and McLaren, Alonso said he feels he is improving each year and that a lack of niggling injuries were helping his performances.

"You're a better driver every year because you improve from mistakes. You learn constantly in Formula One and I'm sure next year will be better. It's true also that the factors in play in this championship so far have been good for us. I remember a mistake in Q2 in Australia when I touched the grass in turn one and I spun, apart from that mistake I probably wouldn't change too many things about what I've done so far, which is good news because there are always mistakes here and there so I'm quite pleased with my performance.

"Also physically it's my best season so far - in previous years you didn't know but always my leg, or my shoulder, or something, I always had some races with pain or didn't have good preparation. And this year so far in these ten races I always arrive at 100% to every race."