Alonso: Small margin to Montreal pole ‘hurts a little bit’


Fernando Alonso will line up sixth on the grid of Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix, but the Aston Martin driver was just two tenths adrift from poleman George Russell in qualifying, a small margin that frustrated the Spaniard.

After a string of challenging races where Aston Martin seemed to fall behind the pack, the Silverstone-based outfit showed a strong resurgence in Saturday’s qualifying in Montreal.

The incredibly tight gaps between Russell and Max Verstappen, who set the exact same time as the Mercedes driver, and the midfield showcased the unforgiving nature of the Montreal track.

But the damp and low-grip surface also made achieving a flawless lap on the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve nearly impossible.

Several drivers, including Alonso, expressed frustration about minor mistakes costing them crucial time.

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"It was a tricky qualifying for everyone with the wind and the drops of rain. You always lose a little bit of confidence and I think no one did a perfect lap," the two-time F1 world champion said.

"It was the case for me as well. I didn't put everything together in Q3, so when you see that you are only two tenths from pole position, it hurts a little bit."


Alonso said he owed his 0.228s shortfall to pole to a mistake in Turn 2 that forced him to pull out the stops for the remainder of his final flyer.

“It was so oversteering and I lost the car so badly that I was just thinking to abort the lap or keep going,” he explained.

"I kept going and I was P6, so if two tenths put you in pole position, maybe everything was already in one corner. I was just driving very aggressively after that to recover the lap."

The 42-year-old F1 veteran said that Aston’s upswing in form in Canada wasn’t unexpected.

"I think we had a little bit of a full picture now of the car after the first nine races, so we were expecting a little bit better weekend here," he said.

"Already [on Friday] we felt a little bit more confident with the car. The last two events we were out of Q1 so that was race over, basically. But now starting P6 and P9 [for team-mate Lance Stroll] we have chance to score points."

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