2023 Austrian GP: Fernando Alonso warns Max Verstappen

Fernando Alonso is hoping to claim a seventh podium of the season this weekend at the Red Bull Ring.

Fernando Alonso is expecting Aston Martin’s recently upgraded AMR23 to potentially perform “better” this weekend at the Austrian Grand Prix, than it recently did at the Canadian Grand Prix.

The Silverstone-based team introduced a series of upgrades at the Circuit de Gilles-Villeneuve; however, the persistent wet weather meant little data was actually gathered as to whether their developments were an improvement or not.

The most dry running the paddock got in Montreal was the race itself, which was completed without a spot of rain in sight.

Alonso did well to finish second in Canada following a great battle with former team-mate Lewis Hamilton, who was forced to settle for third.

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What will encourage Alonso and Aston Martin ahead of the Red Bull Ring this weekend, is that the Spaniard finished just under 10 seconds behind Max Verstappen at the previous round.

Alonso was considerably closer to the reigning World Champion than he has been in other recent rounds, suggesting that either Aston Martin are catching Red Bull, or the Austrians had a bad day.

Looking ahead to Spielberg, it is forecasted to be another very wet weekend, something which actually could work in Alonso’s favour given how experienced he is.

However, what isn’t going to work in his favour is that this weekend marks the second sprint race of the 2023 season, something the 41-year-old admits is not “ideal” for the British team.

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Aston Martin are simply after some dry running in multiple free practice sessions to truly understand their improvements, something which is yet to happen.

Despite this, the two-time World Champion believes their package will perform well, although, he expects Ferrari to be very strong.

“I think the Sprint weekend will not be ideal for us,” Alonso explained.

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“We still have more time maybe of free practice with our new upgraded car. We still need to understand and optimise the package a little bit.

“And in Austria obviously, with the Sprint, we will have only FP1 to do that. But yeah, it is what it is. The circuit will be good and maybe better for the package as well let’s say.

“Maybe good for Ferrari, historically here as well with a long straight and short corners so maybe Austria we have a little bit more pace.”