Fernando second and Fisico fourth after a strong race; Fernando extends his championship lead by two points. The Mild Seven Renault F1 Team leaves Silverstone with thirteen more championship points after second and fourth place finishes for ...
Fernando second and Fisico fourth after a strong race; Fernando extends his championship lead by two points.
The Mild Seven Renault F1 Team leaves Silverstone with thirteen more championship points after second and fourth place finishes for Fernando Alonso and Giancarlo Fisichella respectively in this afternoon's British Grand Prix. The team now leads the Constructors' Championship by 15 points from McLaren, with a total of 102 points, while Fernando Alonso holds a 26 point lead over Kimi Raikkonen, with 77 points.
Starting from pole position, Fernando Alonso lost his lead to the McLaren of Juan Pablo Montoya on lap one, and after that chased the Colombian to the chequered flag. The Spaniard was severely delayed by traffic through the race, but especially at the end of his second stint when he was on a clear track, and had the opportunity to leapfrog Montoya for the lead. As he emerged from the pit-lane, though, it became clear he had come up just one second short.
Giancarlo Fisichella drove strongly from sixth position to run third for much of the middle portion of the race. The Italian was secure in this position until his engine stalled at the second pit-stop, costing him time and one position to Raikkonen's McLaren. He then chased the Finn to the flag. The team is currently investigating the origin of the stall.
Fernando Alonso: 2nd position
"It is a nice surprise to be on the podium at one of our most difficult circuits, and to have extended my lead over Kimi in the championship. It was also encouraging because we started from pole, which shows that the car is competitive, and I think we are looking strong for the rest of the season too."
"In terms of the race, I lost the lead at the start and after that, followed Montoya until the stops. The team gave me a heavy fuel load so we could try and overtake during the final stops, but then I got stuck in traffic -- I lost a lot of time behind Trulli but it wasn't his fault because they were not showing any blue flags."
"That meant I was still behind when I came out after my last stop. It is a bit frustrating to lose a win because of that, but this is still a great result for us."
Giancarlo Fisichella: 4th position
"Once again, it is a bit of a disappointing result for me, because I should have been on the podium today if it wasn't for the problem in my second pit-stop. But even so, from P6, it was a very strong race for me, the strategy the team worked out was excellent and I was in the fight at the front of the race with a good race pace."
"When we came here this weekend, we knew that McLaren would be quicker than us but honestly, it was very close indeed. We have come out OK after all."
Flavio Briatore, Managing Director:
"To leave Silverstone having seen Fernando extend his lead over Raikkonen by two points is a fantastic result for us. The team put in an excellent performance this weekend, and we never thought that the car would be so competitive here."
"In my opinion, Fernando missed the win because the blue flags were not being shown enough to the backmarkers, but this happens sometimes. McLaren were very competitive today, Renault was too, and I think we put on a good show."
Pat Symonds, Executive Director of Engineering:
"Ever since we tested here a few weeks ago, we knew our fight at this circuit would be with McLaren and this weekend, we very much took the fight to them. Strategically, we had to cover Raikkonen with Fernando's stops, even though we knew that would leave us exposed to being beaten by Montoya."
"Even so, it was the right thing to do for the championship. Once again, Fernando put in a faultless drive, and Giancarlo also showed impressive pace in the race. Had it not been for his problem at the final pit-stop, he would have beaten Raikkonen by a healthy margin."