Friday 22 November 2019

Alonso sets his sights on second place on Formula One rostrum

Fernando Alonso has set his sights on being the best of the rest after conceding this year's Formula One world title to Sebastian Vettel.

Alonso is now Vettel's nearest challenger after the 24-year-old's victory in yesterday's Italian Grand Prix, his eighth of the year.

After finishing half a second ahead of McLaren's Lewis Hamilton to claim the final spot on the podium at Monza, Alonso is 112 points adrift, with just 150 available.

"There are six races to go so the championship is impossible - not mathematically, but we are no longer in contention," said Alonso.

"We will now simply try to enjoy every race, to go for individual victories and fight for second place in the championship.

"It's always better to finish second than fifth, so I will try to get second place as I did last year.

"We must stay cool and concentrate and try to reach targets that are within our reach.

"There is still great motivation because, as I say, we want to win races and to defend my position in the drivers' championship."

Of the final six races, Alonso believes his best hope of victory is in Singapore, a venue where he has triumphed twice in three years, including last season with Ferrari.

"Of the remaining races Singapore is probably the best one for our car characteristics," added Alonso.

"In Monaco we were fine, we were second, even though the car was maybe not very competitive in that part of the year.

"Now the car is a little better, on a street circuit we should maybe perform well, and I love the Singapore circuit so the next race is one I can probably win."

Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali described Alonso's drive yesterday as "majestic", but has made it clear no one in the team is getting carried away with being an also ran.

"The result was the best we could have hoped for," said Domenicali.

"The fact Fernando is second in the drivers' championship is amazing and highlights the stuff he is made of.

"But clearly Ferrari must always aim for victory. Third place is not, and should not be, something to get excited about.

"Our aim for the final part of the season remains the same: we will try and win races and always do our best. We owe that to ourselves and to our fans."

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