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Alonso May Skip Miami Sprint Over Penalty Frustration

Alonso Weighs Skipping F1 Miami Sprint After China Setbacks

23/04/2024

Facing harsh penalties and tire issues, Fernando Alonso contemplates skipping the Miami F1 Sprint, questioning the event’s worth after recent setbacks during a contentious race in China.

After receiving three penalty points on his license for causing a collision during the Sprint in China, Fernando Alonso wondered if it “was worth it” to participate in the next race of the same type in Miami.

Alonso was engaged in a fierce four-way battle for the last spot on the podium during Saturday’s sprint at the Chinese Grand Prix, only to end up retiring due to damage.

Carlos Sainz was the first to attack Alonso, with the Aston Martin driver trying to counterattack, and the two made contact, opening the door for Sergio Perez.

Suffering from a puncture, Alonso was overtaken by Sainz and Leclerc before heading to the pits to retire.

The stewards found him responsible for the collision and stated that “in accordance with the guidelines on driving standards,” the offense warranted a 10-second penalty. However, they did not specify exactly what Alonso had done wrong.

But even though the 10-second penalty made no difference since he had already retired from the race, the heavier punishment was the three penalty points added to his license. This brought his total to six in just one month after his incident with George Russell at the Australian Grand Prix.

Alonso is already halfway to a race suspension (one must not reach 12 points within 12 rolling months) (read here).

“These sanctions are not understood, and I do not share them, especially in the case of the license points,” Alonso declared.

“Such an incredible penalty is once again unprecedented.”

“My anger over the penalty is such that I wonder if it’s worth participating in the next Sprint in Miami.”

“And even if I race there, it makes you think that you wouldn’t even want to race and fight.”

“Due to the points that are awarded and the fact that we use tires that we will no longer have available for the Grand Prix, it’s almost worth not participating.”

Alonso had a better time during the Grand Prix where his three-stop strategy earned him seventh place thanks to his late switch to soft tires, seeing him overtake Nico Hulkenberg, Lewis Hamilton, and Oscar Piastri.

He admits that this year’s Aston Martin is not contesting podiums like last season, not because the car is not faster, but because his rivals have stepped up their efforts.

“We are starting from a less competitive base than last year. The car is better, almost 1.5 seconds faster than last year’s, as we saw in Japan. But our rivals are too strong: McLaren, Ferrari, Mercedes… and Red Bull are in a whole different league.”

“It looks like we are 7th – 8th on merit, which is not as good as last year, but not because the car is worse, it’s because the other teams are really good.”

“Two years ago, this team [Aston Martin] had a factory that looked like a karting industrial unit and now we are qualifying ahead of Ferrari, Mercedes… So I’m very proud of this team and there are 19 races left. Let’s have fun.”

Alonso May Skip Miami Sprint Over Penalty Frustration

Alonso May Skip Miami Sprint Over Penalty Frustration. Alonso May Skip Miami Sprint Over Penalty Frustration

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