Fernando Alonso has scaled back his criticism of Sir Lewis Hamilton after initially being furious with the Brit for their crash at the Belgian Grand Prix.
The two veterans came together at the start of the race in Spa when Hamilton tried to pass the Spaniard around the outside.
The collision caused the Mercedes driver to retire, and while Alonso didn’t pick up any major damage, he made it clear on the team radio that he wasn’t happy with his rival’s driving.
“What an idiot, closing the door from the outside,” he said.
“I mean, we had a mega start, but this guy only knows how to drive and start in first.”
Hamilton later took the blame for the incident when speaking the press, fully accepting that he was responsible for what happened as he didn’t leave his former team-mate enough space.
Alonso appreciated that, and was much less critical of the seven-time World Champion after the race as a result.
“I mean, I was surprised, and for sure he now saw the incident and he takes the responsibility, which is obviously very nice from him,” the Alpine driver said.
“It was a Lap 1 incident, nothing really to say there. The stewards, they didn’t say anything because these things happen, especially in that corner.
“It happened in the past, I remember also with Lewis and [Nico] Rosberg [in 2014]. It’s a tricky corner.
“I was frustrated in that moment for sure; every time we start in the first row, second row or we are fighting top two, top three, there is something going on.
“And yeah, I was frustrated but luckily my car was very strong, and nothing happened, I could continue. Lewis did not have that luck and had to retire the car.”
Alonso went on to cross the line in P6 before being promoted to P5 as Charles Leclerc was given a time penalty for speeding in the pit lane.
He was so close behind the Monegasque because Ferrari had decided to pit their driver for a third time.
Alonso says that decision surprised him, and commented on how his former team often make questionable calls when it comes to strategies.
“Yeah, I was surprised,” he added.
“But Ferrari always does some strange strategies so that was one of those.”
The result leaves Alonso in P9 in the standings, one place and 13 points behind team-mate Esteban Ocon who finished in P7 in Belgium.
With McLaren failing to score a single point in the race, Alpine have consolidated P4 in the Constructors’ Championship with them now leading the British team by 20 points.