Alonso blames traffic for losing first and second places (Ferrari race review)

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Button caught and passed Alonso in traffic late in the race
Button caught and passed Alonso in traffic late in the race

Ferrari’s criticism of the new teams took a twist at the Canadian Grand Prix when Fernando Alonso blamed backmarkers for losing him the race.

But Felipe Massa took advantage of the lapped cars to pull off one of the best passes of the race. It proved one of few highlights in a frustrating race for Massa.

Felipe Massa Fernando Alonso
Qualifying position 6 3
Qualifying time comparison (Q3) 1’15.688 (+0.253) 1’15.435
Race position 15 3
Average race lap 1’22.550 (+1.941) 1’20.610
Laps 69/70 70/70
Pit stops 4 2

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Felipe Massa

The collision between Massa and Vitantonio Liuzzi on the first lap was ultimately a racing incident which both of them could have done more to avoid.

Massa had to pit with a broken front wing but was at least spared having to use the super-soft tyres again having started on them.

The highlight of his comeback drive was a gutsy dive past the other Force India of Adrian Sutil, who took his time passing Heikki Kovalainen’s Lotus.

But a potential eighth-placed finish was lost when he collided with Michael Schumacher late in the race, knocking his front wing off a second time. “This was a horrible race,” was his verdict afterwards.

Compare Felipe Massa’s form against his team mate in 2010

Fernando Alonso

With the F10 looking far stronger this weekend than it had two weeks ago Alonso lined up third on the grid, promoted one place by Webber’s demotion.

He mirrored Lewis Hamilton’s opening stint on the super-soft tyres, pitting on the same lap as the McLaren driver and coming out ahead thanks to some speedy Ferrari pit-work.

But an attempt to pass new leader Sebastien Buemi around the outside of L’Epingle left Alonso vulnerable to a Hamilton counter-attack and a chance to take the lead was lost.

At the second round of pit stops Alonso was poised to get back ahead of Hamilton but he lost time behind Trulli’s Lotus and came out behind the McLaren once again.

He caught Hamilton and put him under pressure but when Hamilton got past Mark Webber at the start of lap 49, Alonso spent the rest of that lap stuck behind the Red Bull until Webber pitted. He never got that close to Hamilton again.

His concern now was an advancing Jenson Button in third place. Alonso was 1.2 seconds clear as he began lap 55 but caught Chandhok at turns six and seven, allowing Button a clean run at him and through into second place.

Afterwards Alonso counted the points lost:

We overtook [Hamilton] thanks to a fantastic pit stop from our guys in the pit lane and then we lost the position with some traffic and then we lost the position with traffic again with a Hispania in front in the last laps of the race with Jenson. In both of those cases we lost 10 points from 25 to 15 but we are still there in the championship.
Fernando Alonso

Compare Fernando Alonso’s form against his team mate in 2010

2010 Canadian Grand Prix

Browse all 2010 Canadian Grand Prix articles

85 comments on “Alonso blames traffic for losing first and second places (Ferrari race review)”

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  1. Alonso’s comments where quite factual of how he lost his places. There wasn’t any whining in his analogy rather complimentary on the improvement of the car. As he said he was racing for the win and it was a huge improvement over Turkey. There isn’t a driver that doesn’t comment about why they have placed where they did whether its the grip or lack of it, a pit stop error, and in this case a bit of traffic.

  2. I like how everyone takes alonsos words and puts them out of context. You know what, for how crappy the ferrari level of performance has been yes it totally does suck that the team had a shot at winning and due to backmarkers the win was blown (ok, alonso screwed up in mishandling the backmarkers) but he was probably aware mclaren was quicker anyway, so he figured try to take a risk and it might pay off, as lewis was catching up anyway. I wouldn’t call him a crybaby (I reckon many of you would be crying if it was lh or jb) but just consider how many times this guy has had misfortune this year, hitting the wall in monaco and not qualifying, jumping the start, having to battle back several times, then having no pace the following two rounds, and then he’s presented with a chance to beat the two mclarens that clearly were quicker and losing because of traffic, yeah I’d be mad too.

    1. I dont think I’d call hitting the wall at monaco and jumping the start as misfortunes. They were both mistakes completely of his own doing. He’s not had any more misfortune than anyone else.

  3. LOL Alonso is more used to BEING the traffic than dealing with it.

  4. I have to complement Keith for this article because in the live blog maybe you thought Alonso was whingeing or whatever but this is a very fair article leaving people to draw their own conclusions. Proff that one can have an opinion on the sport but step away and be balanced which is why I love the articles on this site.

    It should be a skill to get around backmarkers and Alonso made a mistake. However, with the rules being blue flags meaning effectively ‘get outta the way now’ I couldn’t helpd but be annoyed that they were an issue. It’s not a rule I agree with at all as I think getting ahead of backmarkers should be challening but the way the rules are I wasn’t that impressed.

    1. I am with you here Steph. I also like the way the articles written by Keith offer a second thought and taking a step back before writing it down (for expample, I think Brundle should do good to tone down the critique of Schumi after the race instead of increasing it).

      Alonso made mistakes, but he was driving around pretty god. The Blue flags were an issue, i have read (a Dutch site) that Sutil was certainly unimpressed with Vettel coming to him after the race complaining.
      Sutil stated that firstly he did not readily recognize Vettel, the car being very much like a STR car and being in a tough fight with several cars there, and having been shown blue flags for half a lap before, when he was actually racing someone.
      Seems the Canadian stewards have to improve a bit here.

  5. I really do not understand all the talk of him missing out through backmarkers. Teflonso simply did not have the car to win!! Even if he had passed LH on his second pit, how come Button came close to him and subsequently overtook him? Talk less of LH who had more pace to spare. He should stop apportioning blames and get on with the job!

    BTW, where is the 6/10 he prominently brought to McLaren?

  6. Typical Alonso, always making excuses. timing your pitstop to avoid traffic is an essential part of strategy, and Ferrari and Alonso failed. Alonso had the chance to finish 2nd later on in the race, but he carelessly let Button through when they hit traffic. I thought he had a poor weekend and did not deserve to finish 1st or 2nd.

  7. When is it that standing on the podium is a poor weekend. Started 3rd on the grid and ended 3rd. Pretty good result. Button was the highest achiever considering his grid position. All three podium finishers deserved their places.

  8. It seems to me that I am the only one that can’t stand anymore Alonso complaining about this and that, waving the hand at other drivers, complaining about this and that… And showing a fist to slower drivers…
    The guy is seriously fast and a two-times world champion, but, hey, gave us a break, man.

    1. I mean “give” us a break, please…

  9. As much as I like you, Alonso – S*** happens.

  10. Massa was not that hot this race. It took him one year to get through the Force Indias at one point. Schumacher did it with a worse car on a single lap.

  11. Clearly the Mercedes motor of the Force India’s were much stronger after l’epingle so it was difficult for Massa.

    Ferrari just had bad luck in this race. Alonso lost 10 points, Massa would have ended up 5th easily.

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