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Fernando Alonso

Alonso: Verstappen ruined Aston Martin gamble

The Aston Martin driver was forced to finish second in a captivating dry-wet Monaco Grand Prix.

Alonso Monaco
To news overview © XPBimages

Fernando Alonso has conceded Aston Martin's decision to 'give up possibility' to fight Max Verstappen at the start of the Monaco Grand Prix was ruined by the Red Bull driver's stunning first stint.

Aston Martin elected to start Alonso on a set of Hard tyres to play the long game with strategy, though the decision meant Verstappen would have an advantage off the line with the softer Medium compound on the short run into Sainte Devote.

But the race evolved into a waiting game for rain, which eventually came within the final quarter of the 78-lap event, with Verstappen able to eke out his tyres for over 50 laps.

The championship leader was able to do this whilst maintaining a sizeable margin to Alonso, who was forced to pit for a new set of slick tyres before Intermediates were needed in a final throw of the dice to recover lost time to the Red Bull.

The two-time champion was able to recover from his extra pit stop to finish ahead of Alpine's Esteban Ocon for second, securing a fifth podium in the opening six races.

"It was difficult," said Alonso.

"We opted to start on the Hard tyre, so we gave up a bit of possibility[of a Turn 1 overtake] due to the short run.

"We hoped to play a bit of a long game on strategy, but Max drove super-well on those Medium tyres to extend the first stint.

"We didn't have any chance and then, in the end, the rain made things complicated out there and it was not easy to drive around."

Extremely fragile

Despite a flurry of incidents as rain turned the run from Casino Square to Portier from dry to treacherous in the space of minutes, only two drivers failed to finish the race - Alonso's teammate Lance Stroll and Haas' Kevin Magnussen.

On the challenge of the wet-dry conditions, Alonso explained: "No full power around the lap, braking was extremely fragile into Turn 5 and Turn 10.

"It was not easy and I was surprised that there were no Safety Cars, no incidents, so I think everyone did an amazing job to keep the cars on track."

Result Race - Monaco

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