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Three-way fight for 'best of rest'

2013-10-29 07:55

SECOND WILL HAVE TO DO: Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso is eager to fight for second place in the Driver and Constructor's Championship titles, but the veteran claims he is already focusing on the 2014 season. Image: AFP


Red Bull has cleaned up the 2013 titles, now its 'best of the rest' in Formula 1 as Ferrari scrambles to wipe the egg off its corporate face as runner-up.

GREATER NOIDA, India - Fernando Alonso has congratulated Sebastian Vettel on a fourth consecutive Formula 1 title; now he's started to look ahead at the following year yet again.

Alonso said: "Well done to him (Vettel) and the (Red Bull) team. I hope we can make things a little more difficult in 2014."

Alonso fell short of a first title at Ferrari again but 2014 offers a new opportunity with major rule changes - among them a new V6 engine which could allow others to catch up with Red Bull's superior package.


However, it won't be just the hope for a better 2014 campaign that will occupy Alonso's mind over the next weeks; he and Ferrari want to at least salvage second place in the Drivers' and Constructors' standings in the remaining three races of the season - with the next one on November 3 in Abu Dhabi.

Vettel and Red Bull wrapped up a quadruple title double with Vettel's win at the Indian F1 GP in which Alonso did not even finish in the points - he was 11th - but is still second on 207 points behind Vettel (322) but under pressure from Lotus' Kimi Raikkonen on 183.

Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton has 169, Red Bull's Mark Webber 148 and Lotus' Romain Grosjean 144 and also in with a chance to make the final podium.

The season's final three races - Abu Dhabi, Texas, Brazil - will also determine the final Constructors' outcome behind Red Bull (470). Mercedes moved into second place with 313, Ferrari has 309, Lotus 285. Anything but at least second in both standings will not go down well in the proud Ferrari camp, which has a record 16 Constructors' and 15 Drivers' trophies.


Alonso added: "I'm a bit sad at not having scored points for the Constructors' title. We have to do better in the next three races, finish on the podium with at least one car, if not both.".

Technical director Pat Fry said: "We will try to turn around the situation in the Constructors' campionship - second place is absolutely within our grasp."

The bad news for Ferrari, however, is that the team failed to make the podium in the previous three races; while Rosberg was second for Mercedes in India, Raikkonen second in Japan and the new impressive Grosjean third in all three races.

The Indian GP saw champions from the three teams beaten by their team mates: 2008 champ Hamilton sixth and Rosberg second for Mercedes; 2007 winner Raikkonen seventh and Grosjean third at Lotus; 2005/06 champion Alonso 11th and Felipe Massa fourth at Ferrari.

However, the teams won't particularly care in which order their drivers take the chequered flag as long as they both finish as high up as possible in the points in the race for "best of the rest", as Rosberg put it.

Rosberg said: "We scored a lot of points and climbed back up to second in the Constructors' championship. I'm quite confident that we can keep that position until the end of the season as the team is doing a great job and our cars look good - but it will be a fight."

Stay with Wheels24 for the 2013 F1 season – fresh reports every day.

Read more on:    red bull  |  mercedes  |  ferrari  |  lotus  |  fernando alonso  |  india  |  f1  |  motorsport

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