Fernando Alonso on 1st laps for Aston Martin: “Everything will change next year” | F1

Alonso completed 97 laps and was 12th fastest at the postseason Abu Dhabi tyre test on Tuesday, the first opportunity to glimpse the new-look F1 2023 driver line-up as several drivers relocated to new garages.

“I can’t be overconfident,, as everything is going to change next year,” said Alonso. 

“But the feeling I had in the garage with the guys, the potential of the team, the talent that I see in the engineering room here, is outstanding. So I’m really, really, happy right now.

“When I signed for Aston Martin I was 90 per cent happy, when they started improving and finished the season on a high I was 100 per cent happy, this morning I was 100 per cent, now I’m 100 plus!”

Alonso described driving the AMR22 for the first time: “Nothing surprised me, the car was behaving well.

“We had some concerns on the steering feedback – at Alpine the first year we had to work a lot for nearly five months on steering assistance and feedback.

“We had some concerns that we spoke the last few weeks so it was a happy surprise that I felt OK with Aston’s system and we don’t need to change much.”

Alonso said about improvements that he’d like to see in his new car: “First the seat, because it’s a little painful on the left side.

“Obviously, we did 97 laps compressed in one morning, so it was quite extreme.

“But we will have to sit down, I have to go through now in my mind, everything that I felt. There are small things, most of them are comfort –  not really the balance itself, or the behaviour of the car.

“The shift tones for the gears, for the pitlane, the dash messages when you do a change, how long a message pops up on the dash. You are used to one setup and now you try to accommodate things to see in a more natural way. These kinds of things are probably the priority right now.”

Alonso compared former team Alpine to his first impressions of Aston Martin: “It is very different. Philosophies are very different on how they design the car and how they run the car.

“So it was nice to feel the differences a little bit and now try to understand what is the best way. Next year, the car is going to be nearly new on everything. It was more about controls and other things.

“This year’s car is not anywhere near what we will run next year. It was not really any anything really to get confident about.”

Other debutants for new teams at the Tuesday test were Pierre Gasly for Alpine, Oscar Piastri for McLaren, Nyck de Vries for AlphaTauri and Nico Hulkenberg for Haas.

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