Alonso targets points, not podium

French car is a second a lap slower than main rivals

Fernando Alonso is hopeful of scoring points in Bahrain but concedes a podium finish is probably out of Renault's reach.

Despite being one second a lap off the pace of the Ferraris and McLarens, the Spaniard has managed to score points in both of the opening races of this season.

While he finished fourth in the Australian GP, which only seven runners completed, Renault's lack of pace meant that eighth place was the best he could achieve at the following race in Malaysia.

Now heading into the third event of the season, Alonso is once again pragmatic about his chances.

"We don't know yet exactly where we stand, although we know that we are behind Ferrari, McLaren and BMW," he said.

"Reaching Q3 is not easy and so scoring points in the race is also difficult. But we have scored points in the first couple of races and I think that is what we must aim for again this weekend in Bahrain.


"We must try and take advantage of the slightest opportunity that comes our way and each race must be seen as a way for us to progress."

As for his team-mate Nelson Piquet Jr, the Brazilian is intent on scoring his first World Championship points at the Sakhir circuit.

"My goal is to be in the points. That was my target in Malaysia but unfortunately I was not in a position to do it on that occasion," said Piquet Jr.

"Fernando has finished in the points twice in the first two races, and so I would like to follow this and score some important points for the team.

"I think that we can aim for seventh and eighth places and we must be ready to take any opportunities that present themselves."