Ferrari boss hits out at FIA stewards with Fernando Alonso accusation

Carlos Sainz was demoted out of the points in Melbourne after he was given a five second penalty for causing a collision with Fernando Alonso.

Ferrari team principal Frederic Vasseur has expressed his frustration with FIA officials after his drivers left Australia with zero points following a last lap penalty imposed on Carlos Sainz.

When the race restarted after the second red flag, Sainz attempted to gain some places in the closing stages of the Grand Prix but, unfortunately, collided with the Aston Martin of Fernando Alonso.

Sending his fellow Spaniard spinning into the gravel earned Sainz a five second penalty and, with only one lap of the race behind a safety car, his punishment meant he finished last of the classified cars.

“Carlos had a very good recovery after the unlucky pit stop, just before the red flag, and to get penalised like this at the end it’s very harsh,” Vasseur said post-race. 

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“For sure you are emotional in this kind of situation because you are not far away of the podium, you are P4 coming from nowhere when we all the others get the pit stop for free. He did a mega good job.

“Now, I think that you can discuss hours about the penalty, if it’s harsh or not. For sure that depending of your position, your team and so on the analysis will be different.

“But I think what is a shame for me is that considering that it was not impacting the podium, at least the stewards, they could have listened to them and to have a look on the data. And I think this is a is a bit of a shame. 

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“Last week we changed the regulation two times in 10 minutes about the pit stop for Alonso and we could do the same today, at least to discuss,” he finished.

Sainz’s punishment marked the end of a painful weekend for Ferrari after Charles Leclerc was pushed off the track and out of the race during lap one.

With both drivers suffering a challenging weekend, Ferrari left the weekend in fourth place in the Constructors’ Standings.