Imola Felt ‘Like Three Races’ for Fernando Alonso as He Looks Forward to a ‘Fun’ Portimao F1 Track

Published 04/28/2021, 8:21 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Emilia Romagna Grand Prix – Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Imola, Italy – April 15, 2021 Alpine’s Fernando Alonso in the FIA Press Conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS


The F1 calendar moves to Portugal after a rollercoaster ride in Imola. While Kimi Raikkonen was unfortunate to collect a 30-second penalty, Fernando Alonso was the beneficiary. It allowed the Spaniard to open his account in the 2021 F1 Driver’s standings. He is now aiming to add to that at the 2021 Portuguese GP.

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Alonso finished the Emilia Romagna GP in 11th place. But he was promoted to 10th, ahead of 9th-placed Raikkonen, after the Iceman was handed a penalty. Although the race was far from easy for the Spaniard, he is happy to get that competitive experience under his belt.

“It was a tough weekend for everyone, it was like three races in a GP with the wet and then dry track and the break in the middle of the race,” said the Alpine driver. (Quotes translated from German using Google)

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Formula One F1 – Emilia Romagna Grand Prix – Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Imola, Italy – April 16, 2021 Alpine’s Fernando Alonso in action during practice REUTERS/Jennifer Lorenzini

“I learned a lot after the winter test drives were very limited and I only had 32 laps in the Bahrain GP. Now we will contest one race after the other and I will learn more with every weekend and be able to adapt better to the car.”

Fernando Alonso excited to face the Portimao challenge

The Algarve circuit is an anomaly in the 23-race long 2021 F1 Calendar. No other tracks offers as much elevation changes from one corner to the other as it does. Hence, it is a unique challenge for the drivers.

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Not to forget that the drivers only experienced the track for the first time last season. Also, it has a newly laid surface, which means that getting the optimum tire temperature is another issue. However, Alonso is looking forward to it –

“It will be very different from Bahrain and Imola, it’s fun to drive on this circuit and I think it will be very exciting in a modern Formula 1 car, not least because of the Height differences… I like new challenges and I will do everything I can to get more points.”

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The first rounds of this season have had us on the edge of our seats. Hopefully, Portimao continues to excite us as much as the drivers.

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Bharat Aggarwal

699 articles

Bharat Aggarwal is a sports analyst for EssentiallySports, covering Formula 1 and NBA. A Delhi University graduate, Bharat has multi-year experience in sports writing, having closely worked with the content strategy aspect as well. Bharat Aggarwal supports Manchester United, Lewis Hamilton, Cristiano Ronaldo, Rafael Nadal, Dirk Nowitzki, Sachin Tendulkar, Ayrton Senna, Kristaps Porzingis, and Dallas Mavericks.

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