McLaren suffer new low with double Q1 exit at Belgian GP
Vandoorne and Alonso fall at the first hurdle at Spa; Belgian GP underway at 2.10pm, coverage on Sky F1 from 12.30pm
By Pete Gill
Last Updated: 06/12/18 11:21am
Fernando Alonso says he felt no disappointment at McLaren's Q1 exit in Belgian GP qualifying as the team's elimination was "the place we belong".
Both Alonso and team-mate Vandoorne failed to progress past the first round of qualifying, with the result McLaren's worst of an increasingly-concerning season.
But Alonso, who is leaving F1 at the end of 2018, insisted: "It was a very good day at the office."
The Spaniard continued: "It's not frustrating, this is the place we belong to be. This is what we expect here.
"We knew this was a tough circuit for our package. And we know that Monza will be tough next weekend.
"The lap was enjoyable. Everything feels good and then you cross the line and there are 16 cars in front of you."
For Vandoorne, behind Alonso in every qualifying session this year, the added pain was his slump to the foot of the field at his home race.
Even an attempted tow, designed to give their cars a pace boost along the straights, did not provide any release.
"There was no surprise," said Vandoorne. "The general performance explains pretty much everything.
"It's a home grand prix and it's a real shame to not have better machinery. We tried to play every card and we didn't progress anything more. It's been a difficult weekend. We haven't had any performance at all."
Belgian GP Qualifying Timesheet
|1) Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||1:58.179|
|2) Sebastian Vettel||Ferrari||+0.726|
|3) Esteban Ocon||Force India||+3.672|
|4) Sergio Perez||Force India||+3.715|
|5) Romain Grosjean||Haas||+3.943|
|6) Kimi Raikkonen||Ferrari||+4.492|
|7) Max Verstappen||Red Bull||+4.590|
|8) Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull||+4.760|
|9) Kevin Magnussen||Haas||+6.754|
|10) Valtteri Bottas*||Mercedes||No time set|
|Knocked out in Q2|
|11) Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso||1:43.844|
|12) Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso||1:43.865|
|13) Charles Leclerc||Sauber||1:44.062|
|14) Marcus Ericsson||Sauber||1:44.301|
|15) Nico Hulkenberg*||Renault||No time set|
|Knocked out in Q1|
|16) Carlos Sainz||Renault||1:44.489|
|17) Fernando Alonso||McLaren||1:44.917|
|18) Sergey Sirotkin||Williams||1:44.998|
|19) Lance Stroll||Williams||1:45.134|
|20) Stoffel Vandoorne||McLaren||1:45.307|