Prior to the British Grand Prix, Fernando Alonso commented to the Spanish media that the F1 teams had to actually contend with ‘three Ferrari’ teams, referring to the Italian team’s customers, Haas and Sauber.
Both of them have been punching above their weight this season, with only Romain Grosjean’s constant crashes preventing the American team from being 4th. Alonso was as usual unequivocal in his media comments about their performances.
“It is not simply that Haas and Sauber are ahead of the midfield group. They benefit definitely, from some of the experience Ferrari has”, said Alonso.
The Spaniard had earlier referred to Haas as a replica of the Ferrari, clearly referencing the team’s borrowing of Ferrari parts as much as the rules allow them to. But he was unimpressed with the media for projecting them as his comments alone.
“I say that like everyone says that. In Australia I said something about the Haas and it seems that only Alonso said something about the Haas”, he stated in his typical blunt manner.
Despite all that, Alonso felt good about the fact that the sport had improved with the smaller teams gaining some competitive edge. “It’s good for Formula 1”, he said.
“We don’t see the Sauber we saw in the past couple of years. This is more the Sauber we saw with [Sergio] Perez and [Kamui] Kobayashi in 2012. Sergio was doing a couple of podiums, I don’t know if this year it will be possible or not with the Sauber.”
“But they are definitely going in the right direction. It is a motivation for McLaren and for the other teams to keep working hard. We know there are no small teams anymore”, Alonso said on how it was affecting the rest of the midfield runners.
He added that the situation was quite close and no one is expected to be eliminated in Q1 itself. The competitiveness is good to see as Alonso said as it negates the point of F1 being boring, though there is still a gulf in quality to the front-runners.