Vasseur: "Optimistic" Alfa can target McLaren after summer break

Alfa Romeo Formula 1 boss Fred Vasseur is confident that the Swiss team can take the fight to McLaren in the second half of the season.

Vasseur: "Optimistic" Alfa can target McLaren after summer break

Following a disappointing run of non-scores in Spain, Monaco and Canada, Kimi Raikkonen has finished in the top 10 in the last five races, although along with teammate Antonio Giovinazzi he dropped out of the points in Germany due to a clutch infringement.

Those penalties are now under appeal, and will be reviewed in Paris on September 24. However Vasseur believes that even without recovering the lost points the team can climb up the order from its current seventh place.

“Consistency is important in the middle of the pack,” he told Motorsport.com. “I think McLaren is always there also, but I hope we are able to fight with McLaren in the second part of the season.

"We have to be consistent. We have to get the cars into the points every single weekend, and try to do it with two cars.

“I think we can be optimistic. If you compare with Barcelona, we were far away, and we’ve improved consistently from that stage of the season. We are pushing hard to bring updates, and we have to keep the same path for the last part of the season.”

Read Also:

Vasseur cited the Hungarian GP as an example of the team’s current strong form, as the track wasn’t expected to suit the car.

However, Raikkonen finished seventh and second to McLaren’s Carlos Sainz in the midfield battle, and even managed to hold off the Mercedes of countryman Valtteri Bottas in the closing laps.

“I was not very optimistic before Budapest, because I think it’s not our best layout,” said Vasseur. “But Kimi did a fantastic job in the race.

“The pace was there from the beginning. The key for us was to have a good start and be in front of Grosjean. We knew that the race pace would be difficult for Haas, and it was important for us to be in front of them.

“Kimi was even holding off a Mercedes at the end, it was quite a nice situation. At least were able to keep Bottas behind for five or six laps.

“I think it was a good step forward again for us. It’s a great feeling before the break for the whole team. We had a tough time in the last two weeks.”

Although Alfa Romeo will benefit from engine supplier Ferrari's superior straightline speed at Spa and Monza, Vasseur doesn’t expect those tracks to be particularly favourable: “It’s also an issue of aero package. I think we will come back around Singapore, at normal tracks.”

shares
comments
Wolff: DTM experience shows F1 shouldn't scrap Friday practice

Previous article

Wolff: DTM experience shows F1 shouldn't scrap Friday practice

Next article

In defence of Red Bull's 'cruel' F1 driver scheme

In defence of Red Bull's 'cruel' F1 driver scheme
Load comments
Can Red Bull really win anywhere now it’s toppled a Mercedes F1 stronghold? Prime

Can Red Bull really win anywhere now it’s toppled a Mercedes F1 stronghold?

OPINION: Red Bull team boss Christian Horner reckoned Max Verstappen winning the French Grand Prix – an event where Mercedes had previously been dominant – would signal “we can beat them anywhere”. Here’s how that claim stacks up looking at the rest of the 2021 season

The IndyCar feature that Paul Ricard desperately needs in F1 Prime

The IndyCar feature that Paul Ricard desperately needs in F1

The French Grand Prix offered a surprisingly interesting spectacle, despite the headache-inducing nature of the circuit. But IndyCar's Road America race offered far more in terms of action - and the increased jeopardy at the Elkhart Lake venue might be something Paul Ricard needs in future...

Formula 1
Jun 22, 2021
French Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

French Grand Prix driver ratings

The French GP was a weekend decided by tiny margins both at the front of the field, as Red Bull inflicted a comeback defeat on Mercedes, and in the battle for the minor points places. That's reflected in our driver ratings, where several drivers came close to a maximum score

Formula 1
Jun 21, 2021
How Red Bull took French GP "payback" on a day of Mercedes mistakes Prime

How Red Bull took French GP "payback" on a day of Mercedes mistakes

The French GP has been a stronghold for Mercedes since Paul Ricard's return to the calendar in 2018. But that all changed on Sunday, as a clever two-stop strategy guided Red Bull's Max Verstappen to make a race-winning pass on the penultimate lap - for once leaving Mercedes to experience the pain of late defeat it has so often inflicted on Red Bull

Formula 1
Jun 21, 2021
The Mercedes lap that puts F1 victory fight back on a knife-edge Prime

The Mercedes lap that puts F1 victory fight back on a knife-edge

Red Bull led the way after the first two practice sessions for the 2021 French Grand Prix, but only just ahead of Mercedes. There was all the usual practice skulduggery complicating the performance picture, but one aspect seen at the world champion squad gave it a ‘surprise’ lift, as it looks to leave its street-circuit struggles firmly in the past.

Formula 1
Jun 19, 2021
How Ferrari got its F1 recovery plan working Prime

How Ferrari got its F1 recovery plan working

After its worst campaign in 40 years, the famous Italian team had to bounce back in 2021 – and it appears to be delivering. Although it concedes the pole positions in Monaco and Baku paint a somewhat misleading picture of its competitiveness, the team is heading into the 2022 rules revamp on much stronger footing to go for wins again

Formula 1
Jun 18, 2021
The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness Prime

The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness

Long-awaited wins for ex-Formula 1 drivers Marcus Ericsson and Kevin Magnussen in IndyCar and IMSA last weekend gave F1 a reminder of what it is missing. But with the new rules aimed at levelling the playing field, there’s renewed optimism that more drivers can have a rewarding result when their day of days comes

Formula 1
Jun 17, 2021
The F1 figures Red Bull and Mercedes can't afford to see again Prime

The F1 figures Red Bull and Mercedes can't afford to see again

OPINION: An interloper squad got amongst the title contenders during Formula 1’s street-circuit mini-break, where Red Bull left with the points lead in both championships. But, as the campaign heads back to purpose-built venues once again, how the drivers of the two top teams compare in one crucial area will be a major factor in deciding which squad stays in or retakes the top spot

Formula 1
Jun 16, 2021