Aston Martin’s surprising response to Fernando Alonso fury

Fernando Alonso made multiple complaints about the car and Aston Martin's strategy during the 2023 Japanese GP.

Aston Martin team principal Mike Krack has insisted that Fernando Alonso’s complaints last weekend at the Japanese Grand Prix are to be used as “motivation” by the team, rather than as criticism.

After having spent the entire season singing the team’s praises, Alonso finally cracked at Suzuka last weekend, where he was critical of the team and the car during the race.

Starting from P10, Alonso made an excellent start and got himself into sixth, ahead of both Mercedes drivers and Sergio Perez.

He opted to start on the Soft compound in order to be quicker in the early stages; however, Aston Martin opted to bring him in for a pit-stop very early.

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As a result, his new set of tyres were already going off just as others were starting to pit for the first time, leaving the 42-year-old very frustrated.

“You’ve thrown me to the lions by stopping that early,” Alonso complained over the team radio.

Being called into the pits early wasn’t Alonso’s only complaint, as he even criticised how slow the AMR23 was in a straight-line was trying to fight the Alpines.

With Aston Martin’s downfall continuing, Suzuka was the first real sign of Alonso getting frustrated, something Krack admitted isn’t an issue and is instead being used in a positive way.

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“I think you can listen to the 20 drivers, and everybody’s really hard,” Krack said, as reported by “Everybody’s passionate. If the driver would not be doing something like that, what driver is it?  

“So, I think, it’s fine. For us, we take it as a motivation and it also opens up always a different view of things. So, absolutely fine.” 

Straight-line speed in particular has been an issue for Aston Martin all season; however, it was amplified in Japan as the team opted for a high-downforce set-up to deal with the high-speed corners and tyre preservation.

Krack explained after the race why the team went in this direction, and how they felt it was the right call.

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“The more you bolt-on, the better pace you have for better degradation, and vice versa,” Krack said.

“So, it’s a matter; you have to make a choice. At the end of the day, we’ve tried actually to go with a bit lower or to go with higher over the course of the weekend. And we finally decided to race like that.

“I think the car was a bit better than we expected in terms of performance in the race in terms of degradation. So, I think it was the right choice.”