Fernando Alonso was the potential for factors on the Bahrain Grand Prix, his first race again in F1 since 2018, when a brake challenge pressured him to retire his Alpine A521 on Lap 32 of 56 – spelling the top of a Method 1 return that the two-time champion had been very a lot having fun with.
Having began P9 on the grid, Alonso not less than partook in some good battles earlier than his early bathtub, specifically when he confronted off in opposition to the Aston Martin of his former title rival Sebastian Vettel, and the Ferrari of his ex-prodigee Carlos Sainz.
However overheating brakes put paid to all that, as Alonso retired from P16 at simply over the midway level – with the Spaniard left to replicate on what had been a “enjoyable” comeback.
“We had some brake points on the finish that stopped us seeing the chequered flag,” mentioned Alonso. “Apparently some particles got here into the brake duct, which is a little bit bit unlucky.
“However… I believe the race was enjoyable till that time. The beginning, the primary couple of laps, some battles with my previous colleagues and I did take pleasure in it. However clearly now you’re upset to not see the chequered flag.”
2021 Bahrain Grand Prix: Alonso, Sainz and Vettel battle in Sakhir
Alonso’s retirement, as crew mate Esteban Ocon – who’d did not make it out of Q1 on Saturday after getting caught out by yellow flags – might solely end P13 after he had contact with Vettel, meant it was a point-less first outing for the Alpine squad.
That outcome places them in league with Alfa Romeo, Haas and Williams, who additionally failed to attain. And the usually centered Alonso mentioned there was a lot for his new crew to replicate on forward of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Imola in three weeks’ time.
“I believe we nonetheless want to enhance,” mentioned Alonso. “I believe it’s very shut within the midfield; a few tenths modifications quite a lot of positions, so we should fine-tune issues and execute [well] to good each race.
“A small mistake can price quite a lot of positions in qualifying and the race,” he added. “So it’s going to be a really fascinating season, I believe, so that you can watch.”
Fernando Alonso loved ‘battles with previous colleagues’