Ferrari call for F1 ‘policing’ improvements after Carlos Sainz penalty review dismissed

Henry Valantine
Fernando Alonso faces backwards after being spun by Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz. Australia April 2023.

Aston Martin driver Fernando Alonso is spun backwards after tangling with Carlos Sainz. Australia April 2023.

Ferrari have responded to the FIA’s dismissal of their ‘right of review’ request into the five-second penalty given to Carlos Sainz in Australia, saying they were “naturally disappointed” with the outcome.

Representatives of the Scuderia met virtually with the race stewards on Tuesday morning to discuss the penalty, with the circumstances surrounding it dropping Sainz from fourth down to 12th in Melbourne after the race finished behind yellow flag conditions.

Sainz pleaded over team radio for his case to be heard in person by the FIA, after he tagged the Aston Martin of Fernando Alonso and sent him into a spin.

The stewards took a dim view, however, and found him “wholly to blame” for the incident, the effects of which dropped him out of the points at the last round a fortnight ago.

Upon dismissing the case, the FIA said there was “no new significant and relevant” evidence that would force them to change their mind, in fact stating that seeing the telemetry presented to them by Ferrari strengthened their viewpoint that he was to blame for his collision with Alonso.

“SAI’s written witness statement is not a new significant and relevant element required to decide who was at fault for the collision,” the FIA wrote.

“First, had we thought that this required a statement from SAI for us to analyse the event, we would have summoned him after the race. We did not consider it necessary then to hear from him to decide that fact.

“We accordingly dismissed the Petition.” recommends

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Ferrari had presented telemetry from the second restart along with written testimony from Sainz and transcripts of interviews with other drivers, but the FIA found these to not be relevant to their findings, and the race result remains as it was in Melbourne.

The team themselves have since issued a statement in response to the ruling, writing: “We acknowledge the FIA decision not to grant us a right of review in relation to the penalty imposed on Carlos Sainz at the 2023 Australian Grand Prix.

“We are naturally disappointed, and felt that we had provided sufficient significant new elements for the FIA to re-examine the decision especially in the context of the particular conditions and multiple incidents that occurred during the final restart.

“We are however respectful of the process and of the FIA decision. We are now looking forward to entering broader discussions with the FIA, F1 and all the teams, with the aim of further improving the policing of our sport, in order to ensure the highest level of fairness and consistency that our sport deserves.”