Alonso buoyed by Shanghai win

Ferrari ace Fernando Alonso says he is now even more confident about his chances of claiming the Formula 1 World Drivers’ Championship following Sunday’s win in the Chinese Grand Prix.

After qualifying in third, the Spaniard passed Kimi Raikkonen in the opening moments of the race before overtaking Lewis Hamilton on lap five to take the lead.

He comfortably maintained his position for the rest of the race in Shanghai, coming home ahead of Raikkonen and Hamilton and moving up to third in the standings, just nine points off Championship leader and outright favourite Sebastian Vettel, who finished fourth.

The result shows the resilience of both him and his Ferrari team, as after finishing second in the opening race in Australia, he was forced to retire in Malaysia due to a damaged front wing.

Having won the title twice in his career, the 31-year-old knows what it takes to come out on top and says the win in China has only made him more confident about his chances.

“Definitely it was a fantastic race for us from the start to the end and with no big problems on the car,” the Spaniard said on the podium.

“The tyre degradation was better than we expected probably so we managed more or less the pace. It feels great.

“After the retirement in Malaysia we had some pressure to finish the race but the two races we’ve finished this year, one second place and today the victory, so definitely the start of this 2013 campaign is looking good. So we are very optimistic.”

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