Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso has vowed to “attack more than any other weekend’ as he aims to end his protracted wait for a Formula 1 victory at the Monaco Grand Prix.
The Spaniard has not stood on the top step of an F1 podium in 10 years but previously pinpointed Monaco as one of the likelier destinations on the calendar where he could land his elusive 33rd win.
Red Bull has dominated the opening exchanges of the 2023 season, taking victory in all five races to this point and registering four 1-2 finishes in that time.
Aston Martin has emerged as the reigning champions’ nearest competition, however, with Alonso recording four podium finishes in five races to sit third in the Drivers’ standings behind the two Red Bull drivers.
The strength of Aston Martin’s 2023 car in the slow-speed corners has led senior Red Bull personnel to consider Alonso a credible threat for victory this weekend.
While the two-time champion admits that the peculiar nature of the Monte Carlo course provides a golden opportunity for Aston Martin to break Red Bull’s flawless winning run, he is refusing to accept any notion that the Silverstone squad enter as favourites.
“I think the same as any other race, to be honest,” he said. “We are not thinking we are the strongest in Monaco, I don’t think it’s going to be a huge change compared to Baku which is still a street circuit.
“I think Ferrari was outstanding in Baku, we could see another great weekend for them here, but then if I tell you that I don’t come here thinking that I can win the race I would be lying to you.
“This is a one-off opportunity, we know Monaco, Singapore, there are specific race tracks where you need to gain the confidence in free practice, get closer and closer to the walls, and I will attack more than any other weekend, yes.”
After successive finishes of seventh since the side morphed into Aston Martin, Alonso has repeatedly stated that the British team’s stellar rise to second in the pecking order means the team is a year ahead of schedule on its plan to win World Championships.
Ahead of this weekend, the Oviedo-born driver reaffirmed that stance, but asserts that Aston Martin must be ready to capitalise on any opportunities that present themselves.
“I think they [Red Bull] are better than everyone else, they did a better job, they are dominating the season and they deserve it,” he acknowledged. “For us it is just a gift what we are achieving at the moment, we didn’t expect to be in this position, so we are enjoying every weekend.
“There are couple of weekends like this one that I come here thinking that I will try to win, and maybe it’s our worst weekend and we are out of the points – you never know, it is a very specific circuit – but there are these kind of one-off opportunities that you try to maximize.
“We saw a gearbox failure for Max [Verstappen] in Saudi in Q2, we had problems in Checo’s [Sergio Perez] car in Australia all through free practice and qualifying, so if one of those things happens on a Sunday automatically you close the gap massively and it starts to be more interesting.
“So the championship is long and we will not give up.”