Alonso in doubt for final test

Date published: February 23 2015

Although Fernando Alonso is "making a solid recovery" following his test crash, it is not yet certain whether he will participate in the final Barcelona outing.

Taking part in the final day of the second pre-season test, Alonso crashed into the wall at the exit of Turn 3 minutes before the lunchbreak.

He was transported to the track's medical centre before being flown to a local hospital where he underwent tests.

He will remain in hospital for a second night to undergo further observation.

McLaren said in a statement: "Fernando Alonso is making a solid recovery in hospital, and is chatting to family, friends and hospital staff.

"From the scene of the incident he was driven to the circuit’s medical centre, where he was given first aid and, as per normal procedures, was sedated in preparation for an air-lift to hospital.

"In hospital a thorough and complete analysis of his condition was performed, involving CT scans and MRI scans, all of which were completely normal.

"In order to provide the privacy and tranquility required to facilitate a peaceful recuperation, he is being kept in hospital for further observation, and to recover from the effects of the medication that successfully managed his routine sedation yesterday.

"We intend to give him every opportunity to make a rapid and complete recovery, and will evaluate in due course whether or not he will participate in the next Barcelona test."

The team also denied that is was an issue with the new MP4-30 that resulted in the crash, revealing instead that strong winds at the Barcelona circuit were likely responsible.

"Over the past 24 hours, we have been carrying out a detailed analysis of the damage to Fernando’s car, and its associated telemetry data, in order fully to understand the cause, or causes, of his accident. Even at this early stage, we have been able to reach some firm conclusions.

"His car ran wide at the entry to Turn Three – which is a fast uphill right-hander – allowing it to run onto the Astroturf that lines the outside of the track. A consequent loss of traction caused a degree of instability, spitting it back towards the inside of the circuit, where it regained traction and struck the wall side-on.

"Our findings indicate that the accident was caused by the unpredictably gusty winds at that part of the circuit at that time, and which had affected other drivers similarly (eg, Carlos Sainz Jnr).

"We can categorically state that there is no evidence that indicates that Fernando’s car suffered mechanical failure of any kind. We can also confirm that absolutely no loss of aerodynamic pressure was recorded, which fact indicates that the car did not suffer any aerodynamic loss, despite the fact that it was subjected to a significant level of g-force. Finally, we can also disclose that no electrical discharge or irregularity of any kind occurred in the car’s ERS system, either before, during or after the incident."

McLaren stated that the last point "refutes the erroneous rumours that have spread recently to the effect that Fernando was rendered unconscious by an electrical fault. That is simply not true.

"Our data clearly shows that he was downshifting while applying full brake pressure right up to the moment of the first impact – something that clearly would not have been possible had he been unconscious at the time."