‘I’m not the only one’ – Fernando Alonso doubles down on ‘strange’ FIA steward decisions

Michelle Foster
Fernando Alonso adjusts his cap

Aston Martin driver Fernando Alonso adjusts his cap

Although not bringing nationality into it again, Fernando Alonso has reiterated his belief that the stewards have been making “strange” decisions and that something needs to be done.

Fernando Alonso was fuming last time out in Miami when, on the back of his Sprint penalty in China for his antics against Carlos Sainz, Lewis Hamilton was not penalised for arriving like a “bull” on the opening lap of the Miami Sprint.

Fernando Alonso: So I’m not the only one…

Additional reporting by Thomas Maher

Declaring pre-verdict that the stewards won’t penalise the Mercedes driver “because he’s not Spanish”, Alonso reiterated that when the stewards ruled that Hamilton would not be penalised as he was not solely to blame for the collision.

I do feel that nationality matters,” he said. “I need to make sure that there is not anything wrong with my nationality or anything that can influence any decision.”

Alonso subsequently spoke to FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem, but he reckons there are more conversations that need to be had.

“We will always talk, and I think the point is very much open,” he told the media including PlanetF1.com.

“We are in the process of discussing more things between drivers, the FIA, the stewards, the future regulations, future driving standards and I think the penalties were a little bit again inconsistent from our view.

“That will always be the case. When there is an accident or an investigation, one part will think one way, one will think the opposite. This is the nature of our sport.

“But we had few cases especially the past two or three years where both parties think something and the referee thinks another way which is the strange thing in the sport.

“So this is something we need to work on and I was happy the other day to read an article that Checo [Sergio Perez] and Logan [Sargeant] saying the penalties were strange, so I’m not the only one.”

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Alonso: ‘That’s the biggest difficulty I think that we have’

Alonso has urged the drivers, teams and FIA to unite as while the season started with a “let them race” attitude, they’re now confused as to what is permitted and what is penalised.

“We try always to race hard and to have zero contact,” Alonso added.

“I think we see how sensitive these cars are, even going into the gravel which has been extended here at Imola, it’s a DNF because you damage the car and then you’re super slow.

“Also the last thing we want to have is a contact and we try to race hard and sometimes this is the way it is motor racing.

“But yeah, we just need to keep it more simple. Everyone is trying to improve, learn from mistakes and just have a simpler weekend. Even qualifying is not that easy, when you go out of the garage, there is a queue of cars in the pit lane.

“It’s a coin if the time will be enough to complete a lap or not, you’re in everyone’s hands at the moment and when they engage first gear and they leave the feeling will dictate if you have time or not. You cannot do much. So all these kinds of things are new.

“Those are things that we need to discuss and get better. But united, we need to do it between all of us – the FIA, teams, drivers.

“We need to be united on that because sometimes we [the drivers] are not even united between us or between teams. They fight each other, drivers or teams they disagree on something so that’s the biggest difficulty I think that we have but hopefully we manage.”

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