Double Formula One world champion Fernando Alonso has revealed he is in a better state of mind for the season ahead compared to this time last year.
“If I think back to last year, my state of mind was very different: we knew we were two seconds off the pace, we were all pessimistic and worried, because we felt it would be difficult to get into Q3 in Australia and that turned out to be the case.
“This year however, we are working on closing a gap of between seven and eight tenths, which is where we were at the final round in Brazil last year and I think we are on the right road to being closer to the quickest, which will be our aim in Melbourne.”
Despite the problems with the F2012 car last year, Alonso managed to finish second in the drivers’ championship, just three points behind Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel. Although the Spanish driver is happy with the pace of the F138, he did not jump to any conclusions from the pre-season tests.
“I still don’t have a clear idea of the general order of competitiveness.
“For me, this is just testing and you can’t tell how the others are doing. Sometimes you find yourself overtaking a car in a couple of corners and sometimes you see yourself passed and the car ahead going away from you quickly, because they are on a completely different programme.”
Ferrari will be hoping to secure their first title since 2008 this season, and although they are in a better position than 2012, the team will be working hard to reduce the seven to eight tenths Alonso identified as being the gap.