Alonso gave Ferrari their first podium finish since Interlagos last year.
|Fernando Alonso||Felipe Massa|
|Qualifying time comparison (Q2)||1’26.152 (-0.243)||1’26.395|
Ferrari drivers’ lap times throughout the race (in seconds):
Poor qualifying and poor starts have held Alonso back so far this year. And while the former was not fixed in Istanbul – he started fifth for the fourth consecutive race – his start was much better.
Alonso picked up a place as Hamilton ran wide on the first lap. He took third off Nico Rosberg easily in the DRS zone on lap seven.
It was no surprise to see the Ferrari exhibit good race pace – it has done so all year. But Alonso finally had the chance to use it and briefly took second place from Mark Webber, passing the Red Bull at the end of his second stint.
It didn’t last – in the final stint Webber reversed the move, but Alonso nonetheless held on to give Ferrari their first podium finish since Interlagos last year.
It was a welcome result for the team after a difficult start to the weekend when Alonso experienced hydraulic problems in FP2, spinning and later stopping at the pit lane entrance.
Alonso said: “Given the shape we were in at the start of this season, this is a great finish. The next three or four races will be crucial.
“At 99% I could not have fought with Vettel, but the remaining 1% went when I was stuck behind Rosberg for too long: maybe I could have put him in difficulty, forcing him to push even more.
“In the end, Webber passed me because he had the benefit of a new set of tyres, while I had none left.”
Massa only made one attempt to set a time in Q3 and he abandoned it, leaving him tenth on the grid.
His race got off to a good start. He passed Nick Heidfeld at the end of the first lap and inherited two more places when Vitaly Petrov and Michael Schumacher collided.
He caught the McLarens and passed Lewis Hamilton, only to lose the place with a slow pit stop.
He lost further ground after his third pit stop when he got onto the marbles at turn eight and ran wide, falling behind Schumacher, Adrian Sutil and Kamui Kobayashi, though he quickly re-passed the Sauber.
He passed Sutil on the next lap and Schumacher three laps later. But a slow final pit stop dropped him back behind the Mercedes.
Massa got ahead of Schumacher for good with five laps to go but finished out of the points in 11th.
2011 Turkish Grand Prix
- 2011 Turkish Grand Prix: complete race weekend review
- Who was the best driver of the Turkish Grand Prix weekend?
- Red Bull: Vettel leads a one-sided one-two
- Ferrari: Alonso stops the rot with podium run
- McLaren: Hamilton salvages fourth after battling with Button
- Mercedes: A weekend to forget for Schumacher
- Renault: Heidfeld unhappy with Petrov after contact
- Sauber: Point for Kobayashi after starting on last row
- Force India: Di Resta posts first retirement
- Williams: Barrichello falls to 15th with KERS fault
Image ?é?® Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo