• Australian GP - Ferrari

Alonso's nerves eased by 'positive' day

ESPN Staff
March 14, 2014 « Massa sure there's more to come from Williams | Lotus paying for lack of testing - Grosjean »
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Fernando Alonso believes Ferrari is in good shape after the first two practice sessions of the 2014 season, but has reserved judgement on the team's true position until qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix on Saturday.

Alonso was third fastest in the second practice session and the best of the rest after the two Mercedes drivers. Testing was not always straightforward for Ferrari, but Alonso said the first day of the Australian Grand Prix had been positive.

"On the first Friday of the season, there's always a bit more tension," he said. "It's the start of a new championship and there is the feeling of general expectation to see how things we worked on during the winter are functioning. Overall, this was a positive day for us and even if there was an element of nervousness because of the complexity introduced by the new technical regulations, everything went well.

"The team did a super job and we had no problems. The track improved from the first session to the second, with more grip compared to the morning and there was also more wind. Running the soft tyre certainly helped, as the extra grip meant the times came down, but it's impossible to have a clear idea of how competitive we are, because as usual, Friday results don't mean much. To know more, we must wait until everyone is running in the same trim".

After a few problems in first practice, Kimi Raikkonen said there was still plenty of work to do on his side of the Ferrari garage.

"That was a pretty demanding day, because although we managed to complete our programme, it wasn't trouble-free. In the first session we lost a bit of time, but that didn't prevent us acquiring enough data to evaluate the overall handling of the car and the Pirelli compounds. This evening there will be a lot of work to do, especially to understand what didn't work and to try and improve for qualifying and the race".

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