YEONGAM, South Korea, Oct 14 (Reuters) - Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso lost his lead in the Formula One championship but still found positives to take away from a Korean Grand Prix dominated by Red Bull rival Sebastian Vettel on Sunday.
The Spaniard had spun out at the start in Japan last weekend, his second blank in four races after being rammed out at the first corner by Lotus’s French driver Romain Grosjean in Belgium.
Third place at South Korea’s Yeongam circuit in a race won comfortably enough by Vettel left Alonso six points behind the German, with four races remaining, after starting the day four points clear.
“If we think how it went for us in the last four or five races...being six points behind leaves open a lot of possibilities for us,” said the Ferrari driver, certainly far happier looking than a week ago.
One of the final four races is the U.S. Grand Prix at the new Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, that will be completely unfamiliar to everyone.
India, which made its debut last year when Vettel won, is next up followed by Abu Dhabi.
Alonso had qualified fourth on Saturday but gained a place at the start and, while never threatening the Red Bulls, his strong performance and a fourth place by Brazilian team mate Felipe Massa lifted Ferrari to second in the constructors’ standings ahead of McLaren.
The Spaniard hoped for new parts in India, the next race, and was far from downcast.
“We seem to extract the maximum from the car when we are under pressure and as I said, four beautiful races to come with good possibilities for us to fight for the championship,” he told reporters.
“Now we need to score seven points more than Sebastian. That will be extremely tough but we believe we can do it.” (Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Patrick Johnston)