July 27th, 2013 (F1Plus / Chris Cameron-Dow) - Fifth and eighth place might be satisfactory to some teams, but not for Ferrari. Fernando Alonso is fighting for the Drivers' Championship and Ferrari are fighting for the Constructors' Championship. If they want to have any hope of winning either title, some improvement is necessary. That is the view of the team and the drivers.
Fernando Alonso expressed his relief at not finishing too far behind championship leader Sebastian Vettel: "We haven’t lost out too much and today, Hamilton and Raikkonen helped us to keep the gap from growing too big to Vettel in the lead."
Alonso finished fifth, where he started, but was never in with a real chance of a much better finish. He lost second place in the Drivers' Championship to Kimi Raikkonen, who put in a fighting drive to finish second for Lotus.
After the disappointment of a run of tough races, Alonso's focus is firmly set on the second half of the season. He said: "There are still nine races to go and the points available are more than enough. The team can do it and the potential is there, so I don’t see any reason why we can’t fight right to the end of the championship, as we have always done."
Felipe Massa's race was compromised on the very first lap, when Nico Rosberg turned across him in turn 5 and damaged the left side of the Ferrari driver's front wing. As a result, the balance of the Ferrari was adversely affected which in turn worsened the tyre wear on Massa's car. Eighth place was the best Massa could do under the circumstances. In hindsight, Ferrari might wish they had taken the time to change his front wing at the first round of pitstops. It might have given him the pace to challenge Jenson Button ahead for seventh place.
Massa, like Alonso, has his sights set on a competitive second half of the season. There is now a four week break before the next race in Belgium, and Ferrari will be using the break to develop their car as much as possible. Massa said, "From now on we will concentrate on the development and on the preparation of the second part of the championship, when I hope we can be more competitive."