Motorsport Week  |    3 October 2017

Fernando Alonso hoping to 'turn our fortunes around' at Honda's home circuit


Fernando Alonso says he is hoping to “turn his fortunes around” at this weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix, home of McLaren's power unit partner Honda, after a handful of difficult events.

Alonso qualified inside the top 10 in Singapore but was caught up in the first lap melee, a situation which the Spaniard felt cost him a shot at a podium finish, as Stoffel Vandoorne went on to take seventh.

Vandoorne again took seventh in Malaysia, but Alonso missed out on a points finish, and dropped behind his team-mate in the standings as a result.

Alonso is hopeful to address the situation at Suzuka this weekend, the home circuit for McLaren's outgoing engine supplier Honda.

“I’ve had a couple of difficult races recently, so I’m looking forward to getting back on track and working with my engineers to turn our fortunes around,” he said.

“I feel that we’ve definitely had the pace there in the car – and Stoffel has been able to demonstrate what we’re capable of.

“However, bad luck and struggles in traffic have meant we haven’t been able to score the points we’d hoped for on my side.

“Both of us will be pushing hard for the Japanese contingent of our team, our partners and of course our fans, and I hope we can finally show the progress we’re making with our car.”

Vandoorne added that his confidence has been lifted by his back-to-back seventh-place finishes after a challenging start to his full-time Formula 1 career.

“For me, Singapore and Malaysia were a real boost, and we were really able to get on top of every session and maximise what we had available in our package,” said Vandoorne.

“We know there has been potential all season, but for one reason or another we weren’t able to show it – so having two strong results back-to-back has been really encouraging and I’m keen to see how we will do in Japan.”


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