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Alonso Penalized for Last-Lap Clash With Russell at Australian Grand Prix

Alonso Received a 20s Time Penalty and Three Points Deducted From His Super License

Battle Between Generations

The Australian GP has left many interesting F1 news, one of which is that Fernando Alonso faced the aftermath of a dramatic last-lap clash with George Russell, resulting in a hefty time penalty and points on his license for what stewards deemed “potentially dangerous driving“.

Alonso’s stats this season show that the Spanish driver wants to fight with the big boys, having scored 14 points and a podium in three races.

Alonso Penalized for Last-Lap Clash With Russell at Australian Grand Prix
Mercedes' British driver George Russell | Paul Crock / AFP

 

Alonso and Russell Summoned by Stewards

Russell, aiming for an overtake on Alonso down the back straight, encountered a rapidly closing gap as Alonso approached Turn 6. This led to a collision that saw Russell losing control and crashing heavily, prompting the stewards to summon both drivers for a post-race review.

Alonso, in his defense, explained that he had intended to slow earlier for the corner to secure a better exit but misjudged the timing, resulting in an unexpected closing speed between the cars.

Alonso told Sky F1 that he had been focusing on what was ahead of him on track, and not behind.

I was focusing in front of me and not behind. I had some issues for the last 15 laps or something on the battery and deployment,” Alonso said.

So, yeah, definitely I was struggling a little bit at the end of the race, but I cannot focus on the cars behind. He’s okay. I saw the car and I was very worried.”

From Russell’s perspective, things were more shocking. In the heat of the moment, stranded in the middle of the track following the crash, Russell shouted: “Red flag! Red flag! Red flag! I’m in the middle of the track! Red flag! Red flag! Grid! Grid! Grid! Grid! Grid!

I’m in the middle! Grid! “F*cking hell!

Hours after the race, stewards imposed a 20-second time penalty and three penalty points on Alonso’s super license for his driving conduct. This demoted Alonso to ninth place, promoting Lance Stroll and Yuki Tsunoda up a position each, making them add more points, something very important for the complicated F1 schedule where every point counts.

 

Mercedes’ Downfall

It’s been a tough road for Mercedes after the Australian GP, with whispers in the Formula 1 grapevine hinting at a potential departure of their team’s principal. Toto Wolff, the mastermind behind Mercedes’ unprecedented eight constructors’ titles from 2014 to 2021, finds himself at a crossroads as the team struggles to reclaim its former glory.

With a significant 33 percent stake in Mercedes, Wolff finds himself tethered to the Silver Arrows in a way that defies conventional career moves. Wolff’s deep involvement with Mercedes leaves him in a bind. His substantial ownership stake means he can’t easily disengage from the team’s day-to-day operations, even if he wants to.

In conversations with Sky F1, he said “The big difference is it’s not like the manager question in terms of, this is my job, I’ll stop the job and then somebody else is doing the job and I’ll go to Chelsea or to Liverpool, or over to Ferrari.

I haven’t got that choice, which is also unfortunate. I’m not a contractor or employee that says, ‘I’ve had enough of this’. My hamster wheel keeps spinning and I can’t jump out.

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