Alonso buoyed by Barcelona breakdown

GMM news feed

Ferrari's happiness with its 2011 car was summed up neatly at Barcelona by the size of Fernando Alonso's smile during a technical hitch.

The Spaniard explained to EFE news agency why he seemed so amused while the clumsily-named F150th Italia was fixed.

"A mechanic had told me what when we go well in Barcelona (testing) the championship goes badly, and when we go badly in Barcelona the championship is historically very good for Ferrari," said Alonso.

"Of course I wasn't hoping for a problem but, when the car stopped, he came to me very happy that this year will go well," laughed the two-time champion.

Mark Webber confirmed that the Italian team could be Red Bull's strongest rival this year.

"They finished strongly last year," the Australian told Auto Motor und Sport.

"They've started strongly with the new car," continued Webber. "It's almost always on the track. They're well organised, they waste no time, they're fast.

"Also McLaren could get involved," he said, "but it's still early days for their new car."

Williams' technical director Sam Michael commented: "Red Bull would make a mistake to underestimate Ferrari.

"The car looks pretty fast on the long runs," mused the Australian.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Mark Webber , Fernando Alonso
Teams Ferrari , McLaren , Williams
Tags alonso, barcelona, ferrari