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Alonso says P15 was ‘nice surprise’ for last F1 qualifying

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – McLaren’s Fernando Alonso says he wasn’t expecting to make it into Q2 at his last ever F1 race, but just about managed to scrape through with a ‘magic’ lap.

With McLaren’s struggles for pace as difficult as ever, Fernando Alonso wasn’t expecting too much from his final qualifying session before his departure from the sport. However, against his own expectations, he managed to get through into the second part of qualifying by finishing P14 in Q1. He put in a lap that had his race engineer proclaiming “That was magic!” over the team radio.

However, the low performance level of the MCL33 prevented Alonso going any further, and he ended up bottom of the pile in Q2, meaning he will start his final F1 race from P15.

“We weren’t optimistic at all about our chances of making it into Q2, as we haven’t been too competitive in any of the sessions so far this weekend, so it was a nice surprise. I was pushing quite hard on that qualifying lap – it felt good.”

Alonso McLaren
Sergey Savrasov / Spacesuit Media

“We start five positions away from the points tomorrow and hopefully we can benefit from some action in front of us. On pure pace we’re maybe not in the top 10, but who knows tomorrow.”

“Outside the car there’s a lot of things happening this weekend: a lot of emotions and a lot of nice touches here and there. Tomorrow when I put the helmet on and jump in the car I’ll treat it like the last one, and I’ll try to enjoy it and do my best.”


Thomas Maher

Co-owner, Chief Editor and a journalist for - Ireland's only accredited F1 & Formula E website. Also working in the Irish radio broadcasting industry. Donations: PayPal - ETH/ERC20 - 0x9d0b8071180AAcB0bD5f0c1d43281768C73e8763

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