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Fernando Alonso

Alonso admits it was 'pure luck' he avoided crashing out of Dutch GP

Fernando Alonso conceded that he "got lucky" in the Dutch Grand Prix as he narrowly avoided crashing out of the race.

Alonso Zandvoort
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To news overview © Alpine

Fernando Alonso has admitted it was "pure luck" that he avoided crashing out of Sunday's Dutch Grand Prix.

Alonso's race at Zandvoort began with a hair-raising first lap when the Alpine driver "took as many risks as we felt were necessary" to go from ninth to seventh via contact with three drivers, including teammate Esteban Ocon.

Talking to media, including RacingNews365.com, about his approach to the start, Alonso said: "The plan was to go on the outside [of Turn 1], because I was on the clean side of the grid and I wanted to have a straight start, not much movement.

"I tried to go on the outside of Turn 1, but [Antonio] Giovinazzi thought the same plan, I guess, so he was on the outside and blocking a little bit my idea.

"After that, I had to improvise a little bit into Turn 2 and Turn 3. There were a lot of cars, I was even in the grass at one point.

"In Turn 3, I chose to run on the outside and I kept a good momentum on [the] exit, but Carlos [Sainz] was in the middle, in a way, so I had to brake [at] the exit of Turn 3. It didn't help, but then Giovinazzi and Carlos were fighting until up until Turn 7 and I could squeeze one position there.

"I think I'd been hit by Esteban in Turn 1, by [George] Russell in Turn 2, and by Giovinazzi in Turn 6, so I had a very robust tyre and no puncture, so that was good!"

Alonso gained one more position late in the race when he caught and passed the Ferrari of Sainz, but conceded that he came extremely close to crashing as he attempted the move at Turn 3.

"It was a very stressful moment, for sure," he said.

"I had a go [at] Carlos like six laps to the end, into Turn 1, on the inside. I thought I was making the move and in the last moment, he released the brakes and he braked even later, so we nearly touched already into Turn 1.

"Then into Turn 3, I was too close and I locked the fronts a little bit. I ran wider than normal outside the circuit, but obviously there are like two metres from the banking to the wall.

"I was like 10 centimetres or something from the wall with both front tyres locked up. It's not that I did anything magic there, it was just pure luck, because I was not in control of the car, so I got lucky there."

F1 2021 Dutch Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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