The record of Fernando Alonso’s radio announcements from the Qatar Grand Prix shows how much the Spaniard wanted to be on the podium. Pierre Gasly had a very frustrating race. I invite you to summarize the most interesting radio announcements on the Losail track.
Fernando’s first laps in this race are silent. He gets the first messages after the second lap and they refer to the differences to the rivals and the availability of the DRS system.
In the first laps, the Spaniard gets a lot of messages regarding the loss or advantage over individual rivals. On Lap 4, Alonso reports: “I have understeer, any suggestions?” and is instructed to change the settings.
On Lap 8, Fernando is asked to manage – he confirms and says “the car is very good”. The engineer informs him that the tires also look good and are targeting target + 5.
From time to time, Fernando gets an order to change settings and information about the position and pace of the rivals. In the 11th ring, he is praised for his pace and management, and is told that he is faster than Gasly. “Confirm, I do not cross any curbs,” replies Fernando.
On lap 13, he asks what lap it is on and if they are still aiming for the +5 target. After confirmation, it says, “It looks good.”
Alonso suggests changes to the settings himself, and the engineer confirms them. There is a slight problem with the brake temperatures and the engineer makes suggestions on how to deal with this.
On lap 18 he was asked for balance and tires and answered “all good”. The lap later, Fernando asks if nothing has changed for the downhill lap, but is told it has not. Then he adds that “he still has a lot in the tires.”
The engineer asks for a lower pace and more management, Alonso does, but at the same time says he still has a lot in the tires so it’s a tough choice. On lap 22, the engineer says they are in control of the tires. Fernando is on the 23rd lap and he is informed that he will be close to Daniel Ricciardo at the pit stop. After Alonso’s departure, he is given the differences to his rivals. Close to him is Perez, who is soon ahead of the Spaniard.
“I had to let go, he overtook me on the outside,” he says after the fight with Perez. “He pushed me wide, I could have done the same in turn 2 ″,” he adds.
On lap 31, he is asked about the balance and the tires and confirms that everything is OK. When the engineer says Bottas is approaching him, Alonso replies: Yes, but he is driving a car from a different category.
Soon after, Fernando is warned that Bottas is out and that there is a lot of gravel on the track. Alonso was close in one corner of the Finn. “The track is OK, not slippery, no gravel,” reports the driver.
In lug 34, the engineer announces that everything is OK and Fernando confirms. “I will enjoy these laps. The car drives very well again, ”says Fernando. “Enjoy,” replies the engineer.
“On lap 37, Alonso asks if the fuel is OK and gets confirmation. “Are there any fights up front we can benefit from?” – he asks, driving in 4th position. The engineer denies it.
Again, Alonso suggests the set-up himself, and reports that he is starting to drive at a better pace and is getting closer to the curbs.
I think Perez will stop again for the fastest lap. What do you think?” Alonso asks, and the engineer says it’s possible.
On lap 41, Fernando hears that Verstappen and Perez have gone for the mediumy. The Alpine driver suggests changing the setup again, but gets no confirmation, asks again, and is asked not to change anything.
3 circles later, he is instructed to push, reports of Perez’s loss appear.
“Tell Esteban to defend himself like a lion!” Says Fernando in lap 45. Sam is asked to avoid curbs in high speed turns.
On lap 49, Alonso asks: “Do you think we’ll make it or not?” The engineer replies, “It should be OK.”
Alonso has information on subsequent flat tires, so he is asked to avoid curbs. “Give me the difference to Perez on each lap,” he asks and gets them, with another reminder to take care of the left tires.
“4 laps left, 8 seconds difference,” says the engineer. “We’ll make it?” – the driver asks and receives a message that “it should be OK, but watch out for the left front.”
After introducing virtual neutralization, Fernando is informed about it, he will also receive commands regarding settings.
Alonso reports that he is overtake on the last lap and gets further information about Perez’s loss, and even before the finish line is ordered to switch to a milder engine mode just behind the finish line. You have to listen to his joy right after the end:
Gasly has a good start, but has to defend himself immediately against Alonso, who overtakes him quite easily. Shortly after take-off, he will get a message that the driver directly behind him is Max Verstappen and that he has an overtake button.
On lap 3, Pierre hears: “DRS available, Max is not in our race.” A few turns later, the engineer will say, “You can let Max pass.” Gasly does so and lets the Dutchman pass, not opening the DRS on the straight.
“We look good when it comes to the tires,” says the engineer a little later. Gasly asks for the left front tire, but the engineer confirms it’s OK. It also lets the driver know that he broke the track limits in turn 16.
“Max is going to attack Alonso, try to take advantage of it,” says the engineer, but Gaslyi fails.
Gasly gets quite a few commands to change the set-up and is quickly asked to save on turn 9. Pierre is followed by Lando Norris and the driver is regularly told about the differences between them, but the engineer also asks him to save tires and fuel.
The French is asked to update the balance and the tires, but does not respond. After further suggestions to change the settings, the engineer repeats his request to update the tires, but to no avail. So he asks if the driver is still able to find the pace in the car, but he replies: “I’ll try, I’ll try to find something more, but …”
The next driver behind Gasly will be Perez. “I have nothing else to do, I can’t do it,” says the driver, suggesting that the tires should be changed. “We are monitoring Pierre’s movement,” replies the engineer.
Perez overtakes the AlphaTauri driver, who says, “The fucking tire is gone.” He is immediately called to the boxes. After the pit stop, the setup changes and Pierre gets information on the pace of the others.
“Focus on the clean laps to stay ahead of the Ocon,” says the engineer, and a few laps later informs the driver that “Max has gone hard, I’ll let you know how they’re doing.”
Pierre is asked to manage turn 1 again, and the engineer reminds him once more.
“I don’t understand their pace,” says Gasly. Shortly thereafter, it reports forward vibration. It looks OK from our side, we need a fuel lift off, ”replies the engineer.
Gasly asks the pace of the other drivers and gets answers. He is also asked to save fuel again.
“Most people are going to one pit stop, the Ferraris have just come down,” hears Gasly. The driver asked if the wind had picked up, but was told no.
Gasly also asks what times Yuki and Alonso are shooting. When Bottas has a flat tire, Gasly will be informed about it.
“Check the brakes, there is something strange about braking” – the driver on the 35th lane will report. “They’re cold, don’t let go,” replies the engineer.
The engineer will inform the driver that other drivers are having big tire problems and are going downhill a second time. The driver asks: “Give everything you have now.” Soon, however, he will inform that the tires are overheating, so he will be asked to retreat and cool the tires.
“Lots of people switch from 1 pit to 2 pit strategy,” says the engineer. “We have a good situation with the tires, the tires in front of you are wasting time managing,” he adds.
Gasly asks Yuki’s pace again. Hamilton is approaching him and the engineer had to tell him about the blue flags 3 times, and then he firmly said: “Let him pass now!”
“Norris has rolled down, has a flat tire – he will be behind you,” says the engineer, and after a few laps he adds that 3 cars have already experienced such problems.
For quite a long time, Gasly did not pass the duplicating Max Verstappen.
When asked about his feelings, Gasly says, “I don’t have tires and I’m fucking free.”
The driver’s message at the end of the race is quite harsh: “I don’t understand why we were so free. I’ve been pushing so hard throughout the race… I really don’t get it. The left front end was overheating every time, ”Gasly says and asks where Alpine ended up.
“Q3 … Alonso’s pace on the first stint was shocking, I don’t understand it,” he will say in response.
This was Valtteri Bottas’ radio announcement after he had punctured a tire:
And this is how Nicholas Latifi:
These were the messages of all drivers after the end of the race:
Such radio announcements chose F1 for its weekend recap:
Here is a compilation of the most interesting Qatar GP onboards:
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