Originally Posted by A. T. T-W
He has always done the same. From his Minardi season onwards, Alonso has always driven uncompetitive, or at least, second-best cars. The possible exception was his year at Mclaren but even when frozen out of the development mid-season, he still did better than Hamilton after that point.
Both his WDC titles were won against the all-conquering Ferrari-Schumacher-Todt-Brawn stranglehold and in a Renault that shouldn't have won.
Alonso is either just very, very unlucky in his choice of car or as I continue to believe, his ability to 'lift' a car above what it should reasonably be capable of, masks its inherent faults from the engineers until enough races have taken place for them to understand and address the problems (the ban on testing has only exacerbated this).
Why the team don't use his team mate's feedback to develop the car early in the season is a mystery. Perhaps they are blinded by his talent believing that tailoring the car to him is the most likely way to garner race results. Maybe it's an insistence by Alonso that as the number one, all development must be centred upon him.
Maybe. But Ferrari knew they had a stinker last season. And they knew they had a stinker even in pre-season testing this season. I'm not sure that Alonso's driving skill deluded them. I think they don't have the genius designer they need.
Three years ago the Ferrari was unreliable. So they put a lot of effort into making a car that doesn't break. They succeeded. But in the meantime (wind tunnel problems or not) they seem to have lost their design direction. All the important innovations are coming from other teams.