Fernando Alonso believes Alpine unreliability in 2022 has now cost him over 60 points after yet another F1 retirement in the Mexican Grand Prix. Alonso qualified ninth at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez before climbing to seventh as 'best of the rest' at the start behind the Red Bull, Mercedes and Ferrari drivers. He was set to bank another seventh place to help with Alpine's battle for fourth in the Constructors' Championship with McLaren, but an engine failure in the closing laps put him out for the fifth time in 2022. Alonso gave a visible sign of frustration after climbing out the Alpine, and expressed his frustration upon his return to the paddock.
Alonso: Race 'exceptional' until retirement
"Car #14 stops and it always seem like there is reliability issues for Car #14," Alonso told media, including RacingNews365.com. "20 laps before the end, I lost one cylinder, so I was running with five cylinders, so I had 20% less power. "I was 20 seconds in front of the McLaren and my teammate [Esteban Ocon] - so I think until that point, the race was exceptional. Here and Austin, I did my best races in terms of pace. "I think I lost 60 points [already] this year, so we add another six [for seventh place], so it is 66. "Obviously everyone else then scores two more points than what they should."
"Amazing" it only happens to me
Of Alonso's five retirements in 2022, all of them have been through some reliability concern, except the race in Imola. He suffered water pump/pressure failures in Saudi Arabia and Italy, respectively, and engine failures in Singapore and Mexico. At Imola, he sustained crash damage after being involved in a collision on the opening lap. "It's just amazing that only one or two cars retire from every race, and it is always Car #14 which blew up five engines I think this year. "We had a [hydraulic problem] in Australian and then at the [sprint race] in Austria, I didn't even start because it was a blackout. "So I think it is 19 races, and in more or less than 50% of them, we didn't score the points we deserved. "My level is the highest at the moment of the season and the results and the standings at the end of the year will be one of the lowest, so it's a little bit frustrating but there's nothing I can do." As for his final two races with the team in Brazil and Abu Dhabi, Alonso gave this response: "I don’t care. I’ll just go there, drive as fast as I can, go to Abu Dhabi and celebrate with the team our last race and then fly back home." The two-time World Champion is ninth in the Drivers' Championship on 71 points, 11 behind teammate Ocon in eighth, but well ahead of Valtteri Bottas, who has 47 points.