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Alonso confident he can still win F1 title

Ferrari Formula One driver Fernando Alonso of Spain is pushed into his garage during the qualifying session of the Indian F1 Grand Prix at t
Ferrari Formula One driver Fernando Alonso of Spain is pushed into his garage during the qualifying session of the Indian F1 Grand Prix at t

By Abhishek Takle

GREATER NOIDA, India (Reuters) - Ferrari's Fernando Alonso was unshaken in his belief that he can win this season's Formula One title despite rival Sebastian Vettel taking another dominant pole position at the Indian Grand Prix on Saturday.

The Spaniard qualified only fifth while Vettel, chasing a fourth race win in a row, made sure of Red Bull's third successive front row sweep.

Alonso is six points behind the 25-year-old with four races remaining, including Sunday's at the Buddh International Circuit, after losing the lead in South Korea two weeks ago.

"I think it's more challenging for us now but I remain 100 percent confident that we will fight for this championship and we will win it," he told reporters in the Ferrari hospitality area.

"I think they're dominant on Saturday. They have the fastest cars at the moment so they are first and second," he added after qualifying nearly half a second off Vettel's pace.

"On Sunday, normally, our pace improves a little bit and we saw in Korea also that we were putting some pressure, on (Red Bull's Mark) Webber especially, so let's wait for tomorrow."

Alonso, who had led for eight races before Vettel knocked him off the top of the standings, said he was hoping to score some good points on Sunday and gain ground on Red Bull in the final three races.

"The first target is to finish in front of them tomorrow and I think we have chances to do it," added the Spaniard, who last won at the German Grand Prix in July.

Ferrari have struggled with updates to their car in recent races as a result of parts not performing as well on track as the team's wind tunnel had suggested they would.

The team's chief designer Nick Tombazis expressed confidence last week that the team were in a position to make up lost ground after having understood what went wrong.

Alonso said major upgrades in the final few races should help them get closer to Red Bull.

"To become the fastest you need to have a big upgrade and what we have here in India was a small upgrade," he declared.

"So we are waiting for some new parts coming in the next races and hopefully we can be close to Red Bull that at the moment is very dominant."

(Editing by Alan Baldwin)

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