Madonna di Campiglio, 17 January –Serious, focused, immediately on the case, Fernando Alonso made his debut media appearance of the season this morning at the twenty third edition of Wrooom. He gave the impression of already being totally preoccupied with the 2013 championship but, at the same time, showing that he did not feel under any additional pressure after the long fight for the 2012 title did not go his way.
“I don’t think there is necessarily an obligation to win,” said the Spaniard. “Sport means sacrifice, work, enjoyment of what one does and for the past three years, I’ve been fortunate to be in the fight for important targets. There are 24 drivers in Formula 1 and few of them can say they have won races and usually finished on the podium. Since I’ve been at Ferrari, two out of three times I have come very close to being world champion, which is the target for me and for a team like ours and I hope I can now make that three times out of four.
“I’m confident I can start the season with a better car than the one we had in the first few months of last year,” continued the champion from Oviedo. “It was actually in the early races that we lost decisive points, when we had a car that was only good enough for seventh, as was the case in China or ninth in Bahrain. The fact we are working with just one wind tunnel, the Toyota one in Cologne, could be a small advantage.”
Fernando has always praised his current team-mate, whom he has been paired with for his first three years in red and today that was definitely still the case. “I have always said that Felipe was one of the best drivers around and I still remember that some people smiled when I said this last year,” said Fernando on the topic of his team-mate. “He and I have always helped one another, day by day and I expect him to always be very close to me in terms of performance: what was not not normal was the difference between us over the past two years, but now I don’t think that will be the case. That will be a very positive factor for me and especially for the team.”
Fernando sees the arrival of De la Rosa as being a very positive thing. “When there are new arrivals in high level teams, it is always important,” he said. “Pedro will work mainly on the simulator, an area where we were not at the same level as the best and his experience will be useful. Having said that, it’s not the case that a new driver can change things or can do it in the simulator: there are and there will be further and more significant new arrivals that can make the team grow.”