Alonso says Singapore podium was guaranteed

Fernando Alonso believes he could have been in the fight for victory in the Singapore Grand Prix if not for the first-corner accident, and reckons a podium finish was "guaranteed".

Alonso says Singapore podium was guaranteed
 Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB13 crashes into the back of Fernando Alonso, McLaren MCL32
 Daniil Kvyat, Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12, Fernando Alonso, McLaren MCL32 and Kevin Magnussen, Haas F1 Team VF-17 run wide to avoid Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari SF70H
 Fernando Alonso, McLaren MCL32
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MCL32 at the start of the race
Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari SF70H leads at the start of the race as Fernando Alonso, McLaren MCL32, Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari SF70H and Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB13 crash in the background

The McLaren driver made a good start from eighth on the grid, but was a a victim of the crash between Max Verstappen and Kimi Raikkonen, the Red Bull car hitting Alonso and launching him into the air.

Although Alonso managed to continue for several laps, he eventually retired as his car was too damaged to keep going.

The Spanish driver believes that, given the quality of his start and the retirements in front, a podium finish was at least secure.

"The car was completely destroyed on the left side, and it was almost a miracle we could continue after that hit," Alonso said after retiring. "In the end we had to retire which is shame because we had high hopes for this race.

"I think we would even be leading now because Hamilton was behind me in Turn 1, so if Hamilton is leading now it means we would be leading."

He added: "Sometimes things work out and sometimes they don't. When we start last because of penalties or we change the engine, usually 20 cars finish.

"Now we are good here and with the rain - I think the podium was guaranteed or maybe we would be even fighting for victory - everything happened."

Alonso, whose best result this season was a fifth-place finish in Hungary, admitted the retirement hurt given how strong McLaren had been this weekend in Singapore.

"It hurts because a podium is always a podium but when we all arrive in the first corner at the start and you are on the outside, if one driver goes wide he hits you," he said.

"As I said, when starts are so close, things usually happen so we'll try to find another chance in Malaysia."

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