Alonso was in contention for a points finish at the Autodromo Hermanas Rodríguez, only to suffer a cylinder misfire while running seventh before a final loss of power forced him out of the race with six laps to go.

It was the latest reliability setback for Alonso in a disappointing season in which he regularly bemoaned points lost through no fault of his own, claiming to have dropped more than 60 points for the season.

Speaking to the media after the race, Alonso noted that “there are always reliability issues for car 14”, referring to his alpineand said his race up to this point had been “exceptional”.

“It’s just amazing that only one or two cars are filmed in each race and there’s always car 14,” Alonso said.

“I think I blew up five engines this year. Qualification problem in Australia; in austria i didn’t even start the race because of a blackout. So I think in 19 races, more or less 50% of the races, we didn’t get the points we deserved.

– But now we can’t do anything.

Asked if he thought it was just bad luck for him, Alonso said: “No, I don’t think we’re ready.”

Fernando Alonso, Alpine F1 Team

Photo: Zak Mauger / Images of motor sports

He added: “The engine cannot finish the race. It can’t be a failure if you have to change six or seven engines like we did and still not finish the race.

“I think they have something to do in the winter, hopefully not too much.”

Renault has put a lot of emphasis on improving the engine performance of its F1 works team in a winter that has long lagged behind its rivals Mercedes, Ferrari and Honda.

While the French manufacturer has made big strides on that front this year, it has also suffered more reliability issues – something Alpine technical chief Pat Fry says was the result of a “courageous” development push.

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The retirement in Mexico was the fifth occasion this season that Alonso has failed to see the checkered flag. The Spaniard is 11 points behind his Alpine team-mate Esteban Ocan in the standings after the Frenchman finished eighth in Mexico.

“My level is very high at this point in the season and the standings at the end of the year will be one of the lowest,” Alonso said.

“It’s a bit unpleasant, but there’s nothing I can do.”

Alonso has just two races left with Alpine in Formula 1 before he moves to Aston Martin for the 2023 season.

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