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Formula 1 Italian GP

Alonso tips Williams and Ferrari to “stand out” in Monza F1 podium battle

Williams and Ferrari have been tipped by Fernando Alonso to be the “stand out” stars in the fight behind Red Bull for a podium in Formula 1’s Italian Grand Prix.

Carlos Sainz, Scuderia Ferrari, Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin F1 Team

Although Alonso is coming off the back of an impressive second place in last weekend’s Dutch GP, the low downforce nature of the Monza circuit in Italy is not expected to suit his Aston Martin car as much.

Ahead of the weekend, Alonso says that early simulation data from his squad suggests that his outfit will instead find itself having to give second best to both Williams and Ferrari.

“They will be fast,” explained the Spaniard. “I think two teams in our numbers will stand out here.

“One is Williams, with the top speed that they showed through the season, and the other one will be Ferrari. Like in Canada, these long straights, short corners, chicanes and things like that, they are super-fast.

“So those two teams will be, I think, the biggest challenge for us in terms of competitiveness, and they could fight for the podium between them.”

Alonso’s run to second place at the Dutch GP ended a four-race spell where he had failed to finish on the podium, having started the year as the main challenger to Red Bull.

Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin AMR23

Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin AMR23

Photo by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

While Aston Martin thinks its dip in form around that time was triggered by the side effects of new upgrades it brought to the car, Alonso has said that there is still no proper explanation as to what happened.

Asked about the reasons for why he struggled so much at races like Austria and Belgium, Alonso said: “I don't know. Sometimes you start the weekend and you feel the car is not responding to your inputs.

“You're not comfortable on the way in to the corners or you feel something that is not connected to the car. And then you start changing a few things on the set-up, and you're just improving one axle and making worse the other axle.

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“You're just living on a fine line, but you are never happy. So it happened too often in July, especially.

“It could be down to the car performance, to the package that we were running at that time. There were a couple of different thoughts of our difficulties in that month, but there is no clear explanation.”

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