- Indian Grand Prix
Alonso talks up title chances
Fernando Alonso insists he is still in with a good chance of winning this year's drivers' title, despite seeing his championship lead whittled down from 37 points to a deficit of six over the last three races.
Sebastian Vettel took the lead in the standings from Alonso after scoring three consecutive victories over the last three races. But Alonso is not worried the trend will continue and is confident he can fight back over the remaining four grands prix.
"My situation is quite good, you could say it's the second best situation as we are almost on the same points total as Vettel, with four races to go and there is every possibility open for the championship," he said. "If we had been offered this situation back in February, we would have signed for it! And again, in July, August or even September, we would have signed. We are in the situation that we plan to fight for the championship all the way to the end.
"It's true that in the last few races, Red Bull has been very strong and quick, but we have seen all year that there have been ups and downs for everybody, so we need to improve our situation and our level of competitiveness and try to catch them. As for my motivation, it is better than ever and not just me, the whole team is very motivated, everyone in the team wants this championship. We have struggled all year with our car, especially in the first part of the season and now with four races to go, we are going on full attack for the last month with everyone in the team so focused."
Alonso reiterated that Ferrari must play to its strengths over the remaining races.
"I think it will be a battle of packages: everyone will have his own strong points and weak points," he added. "At the moment we have seen that Red Bull maybe has the fastest car, especially on Saturday. They will try and make the most of this strong point and we will try to use our strong points. It is a matter of pushing everything to the limits now; the car development, the strategy and the approach to the weekends, but that is no different in fact to what we have been doing all year. We were leading the championship up until Korea thanks to our consistency and through avoiding making mistakes. We have produced sixteen perfect races and now we must produce another four and if we do that, we will be very close to winning the championship."
Alonso's two DNFs have come as a result of crashes at the start and he said improving his Ferrari's qualifying pace was the best way to resolve that problem.
"It all depends on the position from which you start. If you start from pole, you avoid 99% of the crashes, so we need to improve our Saturday pace and start at the front to avoid these incidents. But there is no specific action one can take to avoid first lap accidents. We have always been very calm, not taking many risks and the retirements were completely out of our hands: it happened to us, but it can happen to the others as well. Usually, over the course of a season, everything balances out."