Alpine brought a number of new parts to Barcelona and on Friday this package appeared to be working well. However, qualifying on Saturday didn’t go as hoped: home driver Fernando Alonso was already killed in Q1, while Esteban Ocon was only 12th in Q2. The Alpine drivers fared much better on Sunday: Alonso had to start the race last after an engine change, but fought his way up to ninth place. Team-mate Ocon also worked his way up into the points, where he ended up finishing seventh.
After the race, Ocon stated that he was pleased with Alpine’s progress on upgrades, but at the same time he knows that more new parts are to be added. “I am confident that we are moving in the right direction with the upgrades we are making to the car, it seems to be working. We know that other teams are also making progress and we have to continue to pay attention to that. We definitely need to take more stuff with us,” the Frenchman replied to a question from Motorsport.com† “Seventh place is good, but we don’t want that. We have to try harder to catch up with the Alfas and the others in front of us. We think there’s a lot to talk about after this weekend. We had good talks and discussions with the team and Fernando. And we have some clues that we’re pretty clear on that the team needs to identify because at the moment with this new car it’s difficult to understand everything.”
After the disappointing qualifying, Ocon already announced that he expected his car to perform better on Sunday. “It was, and that’s a good thing. I am very satisfied with the result. I think with our starting positions it was unexpected that we scored points with both cars but the rhythm in the first stint was fantastic. I passed two or three cars from the first lap to my first pit stop and there was nothing we could have done better because Valtteri [Bottas] was too fast. From that moment on, we competed with Lando [Norris], who was quite far behind us but was also very fast. That’s why I’m happy for the team with this double score, they deserve it.”