Alonso in hot water for criticism of Miami stewards

Jon Wilde
Fernando Alonso at the Spanish GP press conference. Barcelona May 2022.

Fernando Alonso looking serious at the Spanish Grand Prix press conference. Barcelona May 2022.

Fernando Alonso has a date with the FIA to explain his stinging criticism of the Miami Grand Prix stewards.

The Spaniard, in what for him was a particularly eventful Miami Grand Prix, received two separate five-second time penalties that dropped him out of the points.

The Alpine driver was firstly penalised for hitting Pierre Gasly when he attempted an ambitious overtaking move.

He was subsequently also punished for leaving the track and gaining an advantage, dropping him to a finishing position of 11th.

Alonso said he and team representatives went to discuss the second penalty with the FIA, in the belief the 40-year-old had done enough to give back the time he had gained, but they were packing up to go home and refused to hear their explanation.

“We arrived after the race with all the proof of giving the time back and they were just packing up, they were not even in the room,” said Alonso at the Spanish Grand Prix press conferences.

“We went there, we showed them all the data, they found themselves with their hands tied because they issued already the penalty and didn’t know how to get back from that document.

“We believe it was very unfair and it was just incompetence from the stewards. They were not very professional.”

Those comments have gone down like a lead balloon with the FIA who, the BBC have reported, called in Alonso to see them.

He was certainly not an outlier within the Alpine team either in his belief that the penalty was unjust because their CEO, Laurent Rossi, hinted as much in the days after the race – albeit not as forcefully.

Alonso is understood to have breached articles 12.2.1 f and 12.2.1 k of the FIA’s International Sporting Code. Article 12.2.1 f says “any words, deeds or writings that have caused moral injury or loss to the FIA, its bodies, its members or its executive officers, and more generally on the interest of motorsport and values defended by the FIA” may be regarded as a breach of rules.

Article 12.2.1 k, meanwhile, states rules may be contravened if there is “any misconduct towards licence-holders, officials, officers or members of staff of the FIA, members of staff of the organiser or promoter, members of staff of the competitors, doping control officials or any other person involved in a doping control”.

Alonso was spotted having an animated conversation with Mohammed ben Sulayem, the FIA president, in the paddock at the Circuit de Catalunya on Friday.


Assisting race director Niels Wittich in Miami were stewards Garry Connelly, Felix Holter, Dennis Dean and former F1 driver Danny Sullivan.

The Barcelona panel are Tim Mayer, Nish Shetty, David Domingo and ex-driver Tonio Liuzzi, with Eduardo Freitas the race director for the first time.

They gave Alonso a reprimand on Friday for impeding Lewis Hamilton at Turn 12 in FP1.

A warning is most likely for Alonso over his remarks aimed at the Miami Grand Prix stewards.