Fernando Alonso sees no reason to be worried about Ferrari's form in the dry or wet at Suzuka, even though title rivals Red Bull Racing dominated the opening practice sessions in Japan.
Alonso could manage no better than fourth quickest on the opening day of action, but more worrying than that he was more than eight tenths adrift of pace-setter Sebastian Vettel. Yet the Spaniard was far from disheartened by the situation, reckoning it important to keep calm about his form especially with wet weather forecast to hit qualifying on Saturday.
"I am sure there is speed to come for tomorrow," said Alonso. "Always on Saturday you put everything on the car – the best pieces and the best setup, etc. – but I guess for them there is more to come as well.
"On Saturday you put the race package, so no surprises today. We knew Red Bull was quick here; maybe this is the best circuit of the four for them, so we need to push them as I said yesterday. We need to try to make them push as well and not to have an easy weekend."
Alonso was well aware that the expected mixed weather for the rest of the weekend could make the event more of a lottery than a wholly dry event, but still said there was everything to play for on Sunday.
"Always when it is wet it is mixed, so I expect a difficult day for everybody," he said. "We need to be at the best position possible but knowing the race is on Sunday and with the dry conditions we expect for Sunday anything can happen. This is the circuit where normally you have the possibility to overtake, so we don't need to be too worried tomorrow, in whatever position we are.
"I expect tomorrow some teams will be quick in wet conditions, like maybe Mercedes or Renault or Williams, and maybe they can have a very good qualifying."
Speaking about the form of Ferrari in wet conditions, Alonso said: "We did a couple of laps in Australia then we went to dry tires, in China we were OK and in Spa it rained Friday morning and we were P1 so overall I feel not too worried about the wet performance, but we know in wet cases the luck factor is a big thing.
"You can have a lap with a little bit less water and you gain two seconds so we need to be in the right place in the right time with the right tire, so in these kinds of conditions they mix everything."