Fernando Alonso was left a bit frustrated with late engine issues and penalty in F1 Canadian GP, as Esteban Ocon bounces back with a good result.

Alpine’s Alonso had an excellent F1 Canadian GP weekend through practise and qualifying but it ended up in slight frustration for the Spaniard. A front row start, his first for a long time ended with a return of initially six points and seventh place.

Not long after lights out, he was passed by Carlos Sainz and ex team-mate Lewis Hamilton. Coupled with this was an engine problem and also he failed to take advantage of the Virtual and actual safety cars that occurred during the race.

“We were unlucky once more with the VSC, I was just on the start-finish line when it came and I was just entering the pits when it ended so we decided to stay out, so I was a little bit unlucky there,” said Alonso to media. “But the biggest problem was the engine, we had an engine problem in Lap 20 or something like that”.

“I was losing, like, one second a lap with the engine deployment, and from that moment we forgot about the podium, or retiring the car, we were just staying on the DRS train with the cars in front just to defend. But it was very difficult to stay with Esteban or Charles because on the straights we were losing one second,” summed up Alonso.

Indeed, it was a pity and unfortunately it got slightly worse for Alonso as both he and eighth place driver Valtteri Bottas were called to the stewards afterwards in light of weaving by the Spaniard on the penultimate lap. He was handed a 5s penalty which was added to his race time dropping him two places to ninth.

He was however quite philosophical about it and the weekend as a whole. “I think this weekend we deserved better than ninth position, but it’s still good for both cars to score points in the end,” said Alonso. “We ultimately lost a big opportunity to fight for a potential podium as I felt like I had the pace to do so.”

The team is to investigate the problem Alonso faced but initial suspicions are around an air leak. On his post-race penalty, Alpine felt it was a bit harsh and it was natural for them to be disappointed to be handed another post-race penalty and lose points.

But overall, it ended up being another double points finish with Ocon taking an impressive sixth place and this was his seventh points finish out of nine Grands Prix. He started in the lower half of the Top 10 but had a consistent run to eventually ahead of his teammate.

“Its been an awesome race for us,” said Ocon. “Compared to qualifying, we managed to get the cat to work you know slightly better and that meant a lot because we maximised the potential today and finishing with both cars in points and with McLaren not scoring it’s a big boost for us in the Constructors Championship so we can be pleased with that”.

“It was a good start, I managed to overtake at the start and defend Charles mid race. He was too quick in the end and we also played the team game with Fernando in the end trying to hold Valtteri but yes we can be proud.  It’s a strong weekend and hopefully we can keep going,” summed up Ocon.

The last few Grands Prix for Ocon have been a touch frustrating where he did not achieve what he would have set out to do so but overall there has been a constant flow of points and his best result since Saudi Arabia could see a turnaround for the remainder of the campaign.

“Yeah definitely, it feels good to have achieved a weekend like that with some big points that we deserve. It’s been quite a few weekends with outside factors happening but yes it feels good,” noted Ocon.

Since the start of the season, there has been no doubting the speed of the Alpine. Alonso’s practice and qualifying performance in inclement conditions proved this to great effect and if anything he should be disappointed with his race result. He too, like Ocon has been consistent, particularly over the last few races and Alpine has steadily cutting the difference to McLaren in the standings.

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