Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Singapore, 2013

Tyre compound changes hurt title bid – Alonso

2013 Singapore Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Singapore, 2013Fernando Alonso says the changes to Pirelli’s tyre compounds in the middle of the season damaged his chances in the championship.

Alonso won two of the first five races of the year and was 21 points behind Sebastian Vettel after the British Grand Prix.

But following a series of high-speed tyre failures during that race Pirelli introduced more conservative tyres which Alonso believes harmed Ferrari’s competitiveness. After finishing second to Vettel yesterday Alonso is now 60 points adrift.

“I think we started in a good way, we were competitive in Australia, maybe not in qualifying but in the race we were taking care of the tyres very very well, together with Lotus,” he said.

“We won in China, we won in Spain and then we seemed to lose a little bit of performance, especially when the 2012 Pirelli tyres came back so that was probably our point in the championship; when they changed the tyres, we said bye-bye.”

Alonso said his prospects in the championship are now “very difficult”.

“Nothing changed too much over the last two or three grands prix. We need to be very lucky but not only in one weekend, we need to be lucky for the last six races if we want to win the championship.

“We have a points deficit which is a big gap and we have a performance deficit which is a big gap so we need to be very lucky. We saw today, again: Webber stopped on the last lap. If this happened to Sebastian one weekend, we have to be there, in second place. If we cannot win the race, we need to be right behind and try to take any opportunity but being realistic, we know that we need to be very very lucky.”

He believes the change in regulations for next season represent a chance to get back on terms with Red Bull.

“For next year I think we start from zero,” said Alonso. “Really we will put all our effort and hopes into 2014, because starting from zero is our best opportunity to close the gap with all the top teams.”

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Image ?? Ferrari/Ercole Colombo