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Fernando Alonso

Alonso reveals late Verstappen conunudrum

The Spaniard was contemplating a move on Max Verstappen for the lead in the final six-lap dash to the finish.

Alonso Zandvoort Sunday
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To news overview © RN365/Michael Potts

Fernando Alonso has insisted he was not conservative in his battle for the win at the Dutch Grand Prix having thought extensively about his late-race plans at Zandvoort.

The Aston Martin driver was chasing Verstappen in the final six-lap sprint for his 33rd career victory having been bunched back behind the Red Bull driver by a red flag thrown following a crash for Alfa Romeo's Zhou Guanyu in treacherous conditions.

Verstappen eventually went on to win by a margin of 3.7 seconds in front of his home crowd, while Alonso consolidated for his seventh podium this season.

The Spaniard had made a look to the inside of Turn 1 at the restart and having joked post-race that he may not have been able to leave the venue had he overhauled Verstappen, Alonso told media including RacingNews365.com: "I was thinking about trying. So I was not conservative, let's say!

"I thought about what to do, a lot, in the red flag period. So I thought, what were the possibilities, obviously, the move into Turn 2 was something that was in my head, also into Turn 1. I discussed it with the team as well.

"That was my feeling, that I wanted to try. But obviously, I don't want to compromise any big points for the team, because second was very important as well.

"But they were happy with me to try. I think they have the trust in me as well and in whatever I decide."

Alonso tried 'risky' move at restart

Alonso made a stunning start to the race by utilising the banking at Turn 3 to get past both George Russell and Alex Albon for third.

The two-time World Champion was prepared to risk a similar move on the home favourite, despite the treacherous conditions and explained: "At the restart, I tried launching the lap, trying to be flat in the banking with the cold tyres, which is a little bit risky, and tried to be side-by-side at least into Turn 1 but I was not that close," said Alonso.

"So after that, I tried some different lines – inside, outside – the opposite of Max for the first lap, in case one of the lines was very grippy or much grippier than he is. It was close, but not enough."

F1 2023 Dutch Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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