Fernando Alonso baffled by post-race questions over Monaco strategy

Fernando Alonso, driving for Aston Martin, expressed his surprise when questioned about the team’s decision to pit for dry tires as rain arrived during the Monaco Grand Prix. The strategy call came as the threat of rain loomed, creating a dilemma for Alonso and his team.

Alonso had been closing in on the race leader, Max Verstappen, when Aston Martin decided to pit him on Lap 55. At that point, rain had begun to fall, primarily affecting the Mirabeau and Portier sections of the circuit. However, the team opted to keep Alonso on slick tires by fitting a set of medium tires. As the rain spread across the circuit, making it impossible to continue on dry tires, Alonso made his next stop to switch to intermediate tires.

Ultimately, Verstappen went on to win the race with a comfortable 28-second lead over Alonso. In the post-race press conference, Alonso was questioned about whether the extra pit stop cost him the chance to win. This question puzzled Alonso, as he clarified that 99 percent of the track was dry when he made the stop for medium tires. He didn’t understand why people expected him to have switched to intermediates at that time.

Aston Martin team boss Mike Krack later revealed that the team’s radar had indicated that little to no rain was going to reach the track. Alonso expressed his surprise at the question, saying, “I didn’t leave the race from the cockpit, as you probably saw on the outside. For me, it was very clear that the track on that lap we stopped was completely dry, apart from Turn 7 and 8. So, how will [I] put the inters? It was completely dry, 99 percent of the track. So, I stopped for dries.”

Alonso also dismissed the notion that Verstappen was beatable if the track had stayed dry. In his opinion, he believed they “didn’t have a chance” even without the rain affecting the race. Alonso acknowledged the team’s bold strategy of starting on the hard tires and attempting to do the opposite of the leaders. He commended the commitment and aggressiveness of the Aston Martin team but admitted that they lacked the pace to challenge Verstappen. The strategy was solid, but Verstappen’s exceptional pace was the deciding factor in his victory.

Despite not securing the win, Alonso achieved his best result in Aston Martin colors with a second-place finish. The result brings him within 12 points of Red Bull’s Sergio Perez in the Drivers’ standings, highlighting Alonso’s strong performance this season.

As the Formula 1 season continues, Alonso and Aston Martin will look to build on their successes and strive for more podium finishes in the upcoming races.