Changes to how Aston Martin sets up its cars left Fernando Alonso enthused following the Belgian Grand Prix.
Aston Martin started the 2023 season with a bang, Alonso recording six podium places in the opening eight grands prix.
The last of those came at the Canadian Grand Prix, with the squad finding the going more difficult as McLaren has stepped up its game.
“I felt, definitely, more competitive than the last few events,” Alonso said of his Belgian GP performance.
“It was not an easy weekend to get into the rhythm on the wet qualifying and track changing all the time, so not much experience on dry.
“I was lucky at the start,” he added of the race.
“Before Eau Rouge, I made a few places there, and I was a little bit worried we will fall back and the pace will not be good enough to keep that position.
“But it was good.
“The car felt fast, we kept one Mercedes behind, one McLaren behind, so we were in the mix, and that's good news before the summer break.”
Though not fighting for a podium, the Belgian performance carries extra weight given the way the midfield has been shaken up of late.
Add into the mix the threat posed by Alpine, the rise of McLaren since Austria, and a slight mistake is heavily punished.
It is easy, therefore, to lose ground, hence even a change in set-up direction can make net a notable difference.
“I think today the car fell more normal,” Alonso said on Sunday.
“We had a few thoughts after Hungary, after Silverstone, so the team was making few set-up changes also to the car.
” I think it paid off today; the car felt much more normal, more competitive.
“So yeah, happy. A good boost for summer.”