Fernando Alonso hints at Formula One exit after 'predictable' calendar

Alonso & his future in F1

Alonso & his future in F1

"We had been P13 three times in a row and today we took that step forward we needed".

Pre-season testing was not as straightforward as McLaren would have liked and its problems had a effect on the development on the vehicle.

"I recover, I think on average six places per Grand Prix, so if we do that tomorrow I'm quite happy with that", smiled the Spaniard, who added he was determined to put on a good show for his loyal fan base.

"I'm happy with this step forward". At least the positive note is that everything we brought for the vehicle works as expected.

"That is a positive thing, the correlation with the factory".

He added that he had hoped to have had a similarly competitive auto from the start of the season.

The Spaniard was just four hundredths of a second slower than Kevin Magnussen who took the "best of the rest" slot for Haas, but the lead McLaren was nine tenths off Daniel Ricciardo's sixth-placed Red Bull.

"Probably the downside of this position is still the gap to the top six".

"Making it into Q3 for the first time this season feels fantastic, and if you combine that with the fact we are at our home grand prix, it's a double benefit. In another way, this auto, is supposed to be the Australian Grand Prix package", he told Sky. "And we need to keep chasing and closing that gap race after race".

"That delay on the first improvement and not having it in the first race probably put us in a hard position in the first couple of races. We did score points in every single race and we are fourth in the constructors' championship".

The two-time world champion is splitting his time this year between his duties with McLaren and racing in the World Endurance Championship, where he competes for Toyota.

Alonso is highly regarded by all of the leading F1 drivers despite it being five years this weekend since he last won a Grand Prix.

"Always I come here and it seems it is bigger and bigger, people still as excited as every other year".

"This year, for example, the track, they put new asphalt last winter so it's still a challenge for all of us to understand the best set-up and how you get around this new track, he explained".

"At the same time we were here a year ago with zero points", said Alonso.

Will Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes make it back-to-back victories at the Circuit de Catalunya?

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