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F1’s Alpine Wants ‘More Fair’ Spanish GP After Alonso’s Miami Penalty

Alpine found themselves going from both drivers scoring points with top 10 finishes to losing half as Fernando Alonso was dealt a penalty, a ruling that CEO Laurent Rossi said was “difficult to accept.” 

Alonso finished eighth at the end of the Miami Grand Prix before a five-second penalty due to his collision with Pierre Gasly dropped him to ninth. But his falling in the results did not end there. FIA stewards handed the two-time champion another five-second penalty for leaving the track and gaining an advantage. 

The Spaniard, though, saw he had the advantage after skipping the chicane on lap 54. When he exited the next corner onto the straight, Alonso audibly lifted and raised his hand, which Rossi felt was enough to avoid the second penalty. 

“A disappointing post-race penalty for Fernando for leaving the track and gaining an advantage means our six points at the chequered flag turned into four points and it has cost us a deserved double points finish,” Rossi said in a statement Wednesday. "This one is certainly difficult to accept since Fernando handed back the time during the lap and we were not able to present the evidence to clarify the particular situation before the penalty was issued.

“With the opportunity to explain, we’re very confident Fernando would have kept his ninth place. We’ll go again next weekend in Spain where we’re determined to piece together a much slicker and, a more fair, race weekend and demonstrate the real potential of our package.”

The CEO’s statement on Twitter via the team’s official account also referenced Esteban Ocon’s crash in the final practice that resulted in him missing qualifying. The Frenchman crashed in the same turn on Saturday as Carlos Sainz did a day earlier, and both still were feeling the aftereffects on race day. 

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Ocon revealed to Autosport that the Ferrari driver mentioned the matter during the driver’s briefing and asked why there was not a Tecpro barrier in the turn.

“What is unacceptable really, it was 51G for what should have been not such a big impact,” Ocon said, per Autosport. “To not have it and [for only] one car it has happened, but when Carlos has complained to the race director, we were all there listening to it, and nothing has been done

“There was a discussion last night. Carlos said the impact was way too big for what it should have been. Today it felt huge, the impact. It’s probably the biggest shunt of my career, to be fair.

“Yesterday Carlos got hurt. I got hurt today as well. The FIA should push harder for our safety. The important thing is that we’re able to race, and I will be able to race as well.”

Rossi said in his statement Wednesday that “with sufficient safety measures in place, it is likely the car would have been okay.” The car suffered a cracked chassis from the 51G impact.

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