McLaren 'better than they look' for 2011 - Alonso

By on Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Mar.15 (GMM) Fernando Alonso does not think his former team McLaren is set to endure a season in the midfield in 2011.

When asked by El Pais newspaper about the British squad's apparently uncompetitive MP4-26 car, the Ferrari driver answered: "They're better than they look.

"Winter testing doesn't explain anything. They say themselves that they are expecting a little more, so perhaps they will be at a similar level to the best (in Australia) and then go on ahead.

"When we get there, we'll see. McLaren are not going to be fighting for tenth place, but rather (for) the podium," added Alonso.

Meanwhile, when asked about F1 drivers' complaints about the extreme degradation of the Pirelli tyres, Alonso said his main concern is the effect on braking.

"Before (with Bridgestone), you would come to the end of the straight and step on the brake with all your strength. Now if you do that, you block the wheels, especially the rears.

"The traction is also worse. Before you would step on the accelerator quickly out of a corner, but now it's more measured. You have to be much more sensitive," he explained.

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