• Austrian GP - Qualifying

Ferrari flattered by fourth - Alonso

ESPN Staff
June 21, 2014 « Bottas wary of aggressive approach from front row | 'I assume I pressed the brake too hard' - Hamilton »
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Fernando Alonso believes he overachieved in qualifying for the Austrian Grand Prix after finishing as the highest non-Mercedes powered car in fourth.

Alonso finished half a second off Felipe Massa's pole time, with Lewis Hamilton's late spin helping him snatch a place on the second row. Despite matching his best qualifying performance of the season Alonso thinks the result is slightly misleading given what else happened to other cars in the session.

"Definitely it was not a normal qualifying, which we probably took advantage of, because it is not normal to see Hamilton behind us for example, so we need to be proud of the position," Alonso said. "We need to be calm about the result because we were 1.1 seconds behind the Mercedes this morning [in FP3]. Now we have one Mercedes at one tenth [ahead] and one Mercedes behind, so I don't think everybody used their full potential because the conditions were a little bit tricky."

Daniel Ricciardo will start one place behind Alonso on the third row and, with Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel further back, the Spaniard believes he will have a tough job on his hands to stay in podium contention on Sunday.

"I don't think [Ricciardo] will back [up] too many cars. Red Bull has been very competitive, especially on Sundays, so I expect Ricciardo and Vettel, with all the new tyres he has now, to have a strong race. So it's going to be difficult to keep fourth.

"I probably will not sign anything now because in the last race we saw in the last couple of laps things can change quickly. We will try to do our race. It's true that sometimes we start in seventh, ninth, eleventh, and we tried to recover.

"Tomorrow we start probably out of position, as fourth is not realistic, so we will try to combine the two things; attack to get into the podium places and defend because we know that fast cars from behind will arrive sooner or later in the race so we will need to be ready for that."

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