Fernando Alonso has stated that the low temperature present at the Las Vegas Grand Prix is resulting in “random” grip through the circuit's braking zones.
Although track temperature wasn't as low as some feared ahead of the weekend, track temperatures hovered around 15 degrees Celcius during the second practice session of the weekend.
It marked the only meaningful running of the day as FP1 was abandoned when a loose drain cover damaged Carlos Sainz's Ferrari, resulting in a full track inspection.
When the cars returned to the track at 02:30 local time, several drivers including Alonso were spotted locking up and driving into the run-off areas.
“It is an interesting circuit for sure with a lot of different corners and these long straights, which at night make the tyres lose temperature a little bit, so the braking zones are interesting and a little bit random with the grip you will get,” Alonso said.
“It's interesting, the race is going to be fun with lot of opportunities as well. Let's see if we can optimise things.”
While Alonso is expecting drivers to have tyre temperatures under control during qualifying, he stated it could be trickier in race conditions if there's a Safety Car intervention.
“It should be not too bad, I think qualifying eventually you put the temperature in the tyre,” said Alonso.
“There could be a bit more adrenaline if there is a Safety Car or things like that when the tyres can lose temperature, then it will be more tricky. But it's the same for everybody and we should be ready.”
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Alonso confident over pace
Alonso enjoyed a strong FP2 session for Aston Martin, ending the session in third place behind the Ferrari duo of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz.
After securing a podium last time out in Brazil, Alonso is hopeful that the Silverstone-based squad can continue its momentum in Las Vegas - but pointed to the close nature of the field around him.
“We had a decent first day,” he reflected. “I think we still need to optimise a few things in the car as every else does.
“Let's see with the full potential, we have a couple of tenths in the pocket for sure, but everybody does.
“It's going to be very tight. We saw today, within two tenths there are 10 cars. You need to optimise everything in qualifying.”