Alonso unsure if gap can be closed in 2015

Alonso unsure if gap can be closed in 2015

4 September 2014 – Fernando Alonso has admitted he is unsure if Ferrari will be able to close the gap to Mercedes next year.

Alonso has yet to win a race this season – and to date has only taken two podiums – and given the dominance of Mercedes, the Spaniard says the marque faces a "major challenge" to get back on terms for 2015.

"As of now, the expectations [for next year] are to have a front running car with which we can fight for the world title, which is what is expected of us and of Ferrari," Alonso told the team's official website ahead of the Italian Grand Prix.

"What is certain is that we must reduce the gap over the winter and much more than in other winters, because it is a gap of around one and a half seconds. I don't know if it is possible to do that in six months.

"It is a major challenge for the whole team, but I think we have the ability, we have the structure, so it is just down to us to work hard."

Alonso added, however, that the improvements Ferrari has made this year gives him and the team some encouragement.

"Everything helps, not just us drivers, but also all the people in the factory who are working day and night. If there are improvements, it is because these people come to the office every morning at 8 with a different feeling and that is why all these improvements are helping," he continued.

"It is positive to see that, unlike in other years, at least there is a correlation between the aerodynamic data from the track and the wind tunnel. Everything fitted to the car is giving the results we expected.

"There is a question mark over the power unit, which, given that development is frozen, means we can't touch anything and so the inferiority which characterised it at the first race is more or less the same today.

"For next year, all the changes one can make to the engine remain a question mark: we can do something and so can the others, so we must try and do a bit better than them."

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