Veteran Formula One driver Fernando Alonso has voiced his criticism of the sport’s broadcasting of “out of context” snippets of his communications with his team.
The Spaniard’s frustration with the radio transmissions emerged as he struggled on the Suzuka circuit, ultimately finishing in eighth place for Aston Martin, while Red Bull’s Max Verstappen secured another comfortable race win.
During the race, Alonso’s discontentment was evident as he battled with Esteban Ocon after an early pit stop.
Over the team radio, he was heard expressing his frustration, saying, “You’ve thrown me to the lions by pitting me that early mate, unbelievable.”
Later, referring to Ocon’s performance, he remarked, “He’s pulling away on the straight, so think of something!”
Despite eventually finishing ahead of Ocon’s Alpine, Alonso found himself approximately 17 seconds behind George Russell’s Mercedes, securing a seventh-place finish.
When asked about his demeanour on the team radio, the two-time world champion took issue with Formula One’s TV directors, accusing them of portraying him as angrier than he truly was.
Alonso stated, “It’s the same, the classic thing, the classic FOM radio, completely out of context.
“I’m not sure exactly what other drivers can say when they are behind a car that is slower and on the straight they are pulling away even when you open the DRS.
“Maybe the other drivers say ‘I’m okay, I’m happy to be behind,’ but I prefer to be motivated to overtake them on track.
“I was slower even with DRS open; I called for a different strategy, we stopped, we beat them, that’s the way we do it, we beat everyone on track even if the radio is the highlight.”
However, Alonso’s tone shifted on social media after the race. In a post on X, he wrote, “Nice race and very good pace from the car today.
“Japan always leaves me with a smile.
“Happy with the start and happy that we have been fast.
“More points for the team and on to the next one in Qatar.
“Thank you, Japan.”
During the post-race press conference, Alonso adopted a more measured approach, acknowledging the positives from the race.
“It was a good race,” he told reporters.
“I think mega start, up to P6, and then we had a good pace in the race.
“I think we didn’t optimise the strategy, maybe we stopped too soon at the beginning too early.
“Maybe that compromised a little bit the final result.
“But we were fast, and the pace was a little bit better than expected, so I had fun in the car.”
He further commented, “I think today we had a little bit more than the result shows. I think P6 and definitely P7 was possible after the start.
“But obviously, the McLarens are a little bit too far ahead at the moment; we need to see.
“Everyone is working flat out in the factory to bring some new parts before the end of the season, so let’s see what we can bring.”