Millennium Post

Ferrari savour ‘win’ over Red Bull

Ferrari ace Fernando Alonso sees his second place in the Australian Grand Prix as a pyschological win over Red Bull as the Italian team made an encouraging start to the new Formula One season on Sunday.

Alonso was runner-up to Finland’s Kimi Raikkonen in his Lotus. But importantly for Ferrari, they finished ahead of the world champion Red Bull constructors’ team in the first of this season’s 19 races.

Red Bull’s three-time world champion Sebastian Vettel started off the pole but despite the car’s superior speed they were brought back to the field by degrading tyre wear.

Alonso, who was overhauled by Vettel in last season’s final Brazil race for the world championship, knew the significance of his second placing and teammate Felipe Massa’s fourth place on Sunday.

‘Finishing ahead of the Red Bull tastes like a win, even if we know that despite today’s race result, they are still the quickest,’ Alonso said. ‘Now we can expect another weekend (in Malaysia) with very changeable weather and one that also puts a lot of stress on the cars from a mechanical point of view and on the drivers, from a physical one.

‘But we can tackle it calmly on the back of this good result.’ Alonso was encouraged by Ferrari’s forward showing in the season-opener. ‘We can claim to have started this season on the right foot, immediately in the fight with the best,’ he said.
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