Alonso backs McLaren to chase down Red Bull
Fernando Alonso believes McLaren have the potential to chase down Red Bull in this year's Formula One world championship.
McLaren finished ninth in last season's constructors' standings, with Red Bull up in third, but the British team have switched to a Renault engine for 2018.
And Alonso - twice a world champion as a Renault driver - is optimistic for the year to come, having finished fifth at the Australian Grand Prix between Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen.
"It is the first race with this [McLaren-Renault] combination, so there is a lot more to come and hopefully, from Bahrain, we will see another step forward," Alonso told Sky Sports.
"Red Bull will be the next target. There is a lot of potential in the car but it's still to be unlocked.
"Right now, [Red Bull] are still clearly ahead of us and are in that exclusive group of Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull.
"McLaren is willing to enter that group and I think in the coming races we will forget the middle group and we look forward to those privileged three top teams."
Buen inicio con los dos coches puntuando y mucho margen de mejora. Gracias Australia.— Fernando Alonso (@alo_oficial) March 25, 2018
Good start for us with double points. More performance to be unlock. Thanks Australia. #mclaren #f1 #14 #melbourne #ausGP pic.twitter.com/RpbkiwLzyG