|© AP Photo/Yves Logghe
Fernando Alonso has never won the Belgian Grand Prix in his career and after qualifying on Saturday the Ferrari driver has made it even more difficult to get that first victory at the legendary Spa-Francorchamps circuit.
The Spaniard will start the race from ninth place, hampering his chances to challenge for the title this season, particularly since standings leader Sebastian Vettel qualified in second place.
The double world champion pointed out that the changing weather conditions hurt his prospects in qualifying as the car had potential, since he was the quickest in a wet Q1 and second in a dry Q2.
"We were maybe not going to fight for pole, but I think we were in a condition for fourth, fifth or sixth," he was quoted saying by Autosport.
Alonso’s performance at the Belgian GP has been lacklustre as he has never started from the front row and has been on the podium just twice – both with Renault.
Furthermore, he has retired from the race thrice in the last four years and by starting ninth, he’d have to be wary into the first corner to ensure that he doesn’t register another DNF.
"If we manage to pass the people in front, we have the pace," he said. "The only problem will be to pass them and we have to think how."
Winner of two races in the first five Grands Prix, Alonso’s performance has dipped with the last four results descending from second, to third, fourth and then fifth in that order.
Regardless, Alonso believed he can still win the race on Sunday.
"Anything can happen here. Vettel started 11th last year and finished second,” he recalled. "Spa always offers you big possibilities for a comeback, especially in terms of weather unpredictability.”