Double Formula One world champion Fernando Alonso scored his first points of the 2021 Formula One season at the Emilia Romenga Grand Prix at the Imola circuit on Sunday after his former teammate Kimi Raikkonen was penalized for a safety car infringement resulting in a 30s time penalty moving Alonso up to tenth place in the race.
Speaking following the event, Alonso said:
It was tricky today as we had several different conditions, starting the race in the wet and finishing in the dry. I took a lot of learnings after driving in these conditions again. In Formula 1, you don’t get any preparation, and with one and a half days of testing it’s not easy. Overall, I would say it was like four race experiences all in one. I think the car is better this weekend, which is positive but it’s still very tight between a number of cars. We’ll go again in Portugal.
Esteban Ocon ended the race in ninth place and speaking following the event, the Frenchman said:
It was a challenging race today in hard conditions. There were lots of opportunities out there, we managed to score a point, a decent result and a good reward for the team’s hard work. There was potentially more on the table. It was a long, physical race and flat out right until the end after the restart. I had some fun fights out there, especially with Fernando. Now, we look forward to the next race weekend.
Marcin Budkowski, Executive Director of the Alpine F1 Team said:
We scored our first point of the season today and we had to work hard for it. Both cars had poor starts in wet conditions and lost several positions on the first lap, which is something we need to understand. In the dry, our pace was pretty decent with both drivers together on the track and coming back towards the points positions. Esteban got stuck behind Räikkönen for the final part of the race and couldn’t make the move, underlining how difficult it is to overtake here. We leave Imola with bittersweet feelings; pleased to have our first point of the season, but it was a race that didn’t go as it could have for us. We move onto the next race hungry for more.