Fernando Alonso lashes out at the FIA

Fernando Alonso served his five-second time penalty on Lap 19/50 of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Double world champion Fernando Alonso hit out at the FIA for putting on a “poor show” after Sunday’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, following a podium fiasco that took several hours to solve.

Alonso once again performed brilliantly for Aston Martin at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit, with the Spaniard having claimed a second consecutive podium for the Silverstone-based team.

The 41-year-old finished third despite having served a five-second time penalty during his one and only pit-stop, after starting outside his grid slot.

Whilst the Aston Martin driver was busy celebrating on the podium, though, it was announced that Alonso had been awarded a 10-second penalty, after the FIA deemed that the rear jack had been touching the car whilst the penalty was being served.

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This left Alonso and Aston Martin furious, given that the Spanish driver served his penalty on Lap 19/50.

The team were only informed about a further investigation on the final lap of the race, outside of article 16.3.

Article 16.3 of the Sporting Regulations states: “Any decision or communication concerning a particular Competitor should be given to him within twenty-five (25) minutes of such decision, and receipt must be acknowledged.”

The FIA, therefore, failed to comply with article 16.3, whilst they later also agreed that the rear jack was simply touching the car and not “working” on it, which is illegal whilst serving a penalty.

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It meant that George Russell was promoted to third for roughly four hours, before Alonso’s podium was reinstated.

The FIA are set to clarify the rules ahead of next weekend’s Australian Grand Prix, to avoid further confusion.

Before his podium was reinstated, Alonso criticised the FIA for not putting “on a good show for our fans”, with their decision having become the biggest talking point.

“I was on the podium, I did pictures, I took the trophy, I celebrated and now I have apparently three points less. I don’t have 15, I have 12,” Alonso told Sky Sports F1.

“I think it is more FIA, poor show. You cannot apply a penalty 35 laps after the pit stop. They had enough time to inform about the penalty. If I knew that, maybe then I open up 11 seconds to the car behind.

“Today, we didn’t put on a good show for our fans. I know the team is trying to review it with the stewards now because we didn’t understand fully the second penalty.”

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Team principal Mike Krack revealed after the 10-second penalty was announced that “no advantage” came from the rear jack touching the car, something the FIA seemingly agreed.

“The regulation said you may not work on the car, it’s maybe a little bit ambiguous but this is something that we need to look at,” said Krack.

“We have a clear procedure for it, we have a countdown, and everything was fully safe. No advantage came from it.”