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Fernando Alonso Q&A: Spain will see huge step for McLaren

20 Apr 2015

Sunday's race in Bahrain started with disappointment for McLaren, as Jenson Button failed to make the start due to more technical problems. However, it ended on a more positive note, as Fernando Alonso came within four seconds of scoring the first point of the team's revived Honda partnership. Now the focus is on achieving some serious progress for the next round, Alonso's home race in Spain...

Q: Fernando, Bahrain was the closest result to the points so far. Are you satisfied?

Fernando Alonso: Well, one point would have been even better. In the end it was positive that we finished the race and were able to get more experience, but in the end we have to look at many things for Barcelona. We have three weeks to increase the performance and work on the reliability. We have had concerns, as Jenson (Button) was not even able to start the race so obviously we have a lot work to do.

Q: Every effort was made to get Jenson into the race. What kind of investigations will be done to find out what went wrong?

FA: Well, more or less we knew that we were weak in some areas, so this will be very carefully investigated in the next couple of weeks. Of course for Jenson the situation was unpleasant as he prepared for the race in the best way and the engineers and mechanics worked all night until close to the race start to get him on the grid - unfortunately without success. Hopefully such a situation will not occur again.

Q: Was it good to finally overtake again?

FA: I had new tyres so it was a bit easier. But it was a strange situation in the race. Hopefully we will be able in the next couple of races to really fight for top positions and not only battle for this kind of overtaking. 

Q: But when looking at the three previous races was this a good weekend for you?

FA: Yes, because right now everything is about experience. Of course it was a bit sad that we've raced only with one car so it was extra important to finish the race. Now let's see what we can do in the next three weeks. Especially the reliability issues have to be addressed, as we have seen this weekend. 

Q: If you look back at the previous qualifyings where Q1 was your final stop, making it into Q2 here showed that the pace is getting better. Is the mood also getting better?

FA: We are all united. We are all grown up and committed to this project. Nobody is panicking in this tough moment - and panicking can be very easy in such a tough situation. I predict that in Barcelona we will see the first huge step and also the power effect is low in Monaco so we should also have a good race there. My prediction is that the next three races will be very interesting for us.

Q: The next race is your home Grand Prix. Of course you want to deliver a good race in front of your home crowd…

FA: ...and I promise my fans to do everything to improve the performance. The steps that we've made since Melbourne all point in the right direction. We will be working flat out to increase the performance for Barcelona - and the odds indicate that we should. I am optimistic - even if I am aware of the fact that still a lot needs to be done.