There are just 3 days until lights out at the Portuguese Grand Prix in Portimão, where the battle will resume among the incredibly close contenders of 2021.
Amongst just three teams awaiting their first points of the 2021 season are Alfa Romeo, who are looking optimistic ahead of Sunday’s jaunt at the Algarve International Circuit.
The team kicked off the season slower than what they would have wanted, finishing just outside the points in P11 and P12 at the 2021 opener in Bahrain.
Further heartbreak was then seen at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in April when Raikkonen and Giovinazzi landed in P13 and P14 with Raikkonen being demoted from ninth and out of the points having received a 30-second time penalty for an infringement during the race.
Looking ahead to Sunday’s race, Alfa Romeo are now determined to remain in the midfield fight: “We head to Portugal first and then Spain determined to get our tally off the mark.
“Confidence is high within the team, which is unshaken by the bad luck of the opening races.
“The swings of fortune are bound to favour us soon, and with them should come the just rewards for our improved form.
“In the meantime, hard work and commitment remain unwavering.
“We head to Iberia with quiet confidence, ready to put up a fight to bring home the results we deserve.”
Ahead of the double-header Kimi Raikkonen said he believes they can bring the fight to anyone in the midfield if they do their jobs properly:
“Two more races mean two more chances to have a good result – something we went really close to in the opening events of the season. We are not miles off, we are right in the middle of this scrap and we can fight with anyone in the midfield if we do our job properly and we have a little luck, which we missed so far this season.
“Last year I had a fun first lap in Portugal, but it’s not going to be on my mind: in the end, it doesn’t really matter how you start a race, but where you finish it and we need to finish it in the top ten to achieve our objective.”
Meanwhile, Antonio Giovinazzi is determined to bring home the results for Alfa Romeo after a disappointing first two rounds of the 2021 season:
“I can’t wait to be back in the car for the races in Portugal and Spain. I feel we definitely haven’t reaped what we deserved in the first two rounds: we have been terribly unlucky, especially in Imola where we would have been on course for ninth or tenth if it hadn’t been for a tear-off stuck in a brake.
“We need to take the positives of those performances and use them as a spur to go one better in the next races: we know we are in a very close fight and we know we can come home with some really good results if things go our way.”