Fernando Alonso is pessimistic about his chances of securing a final podium with Alpine before leaving the team at the end of the season.
The two-time champion has six races left with the Alpine team before leaving to join Aston Martin in 2023.
In 2022, Red Bull, Ferrari and Mercedes have become the established front-running teams, with Alpine currently leading the 'midfield' battle in P4 in the Constructors' Championship.
The Enstone-based team have longer-term ambitions to join the frontrunners and compete for Grands Prix victories, but Alonso poured cold water on any late season podium challenges in 2022.
"I think we are in the same place as we have been all year long," Alonso told media including RacingNews365.com.
"I think we are right behind the top three teams, so our natural position is seventh and eighth, so we need some help from the cars in front.
"Sometimes there are penalties involved like in Spa and we start third on the grid.
"But lately in the race we eventually ended up in our natural [position]."
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Alonso: Points will continue without mechanical issues
Prior to the Italian Grand Prix, where Alonso retired with a mechanical issue from a points-paying position, Alpine had scored points in every event except the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.
Their scoreless race at Monza means they are now just 18 points ahead of McLaren in the contest for P4 in the Constructors' Championship.
Despite the technical problems, Alonso believed the general consistency of the team would result in continued point scoring over the remainder of the season.
"I think we are in a good run now. We found some consistency even though these last races were not completely out of trouble for us," added Alonso.
"One of those was Barcelona; we changed the engine, we started last. One of those was Austria; the car didn't start on the sprint race, and we started last on Sunday.
"So, we still need to improve a few things to have completely clean weekends and, if we do so, we will probably be in the points in the future races.
F1 Podcast: Does F1's grid penalty system need revising?
With confusion reigning for several hours over Max Verstappen's starting position for the Italian Grand Prix, does F1's grid penalty system need revising, and should there be a rule preventing races from ending under the Safety Car?
RacingNews365.com F1 journalists Dieter Rencken and Michael Butterworth discuss the key issues from the Italian Grand Prix.