George Russell to be stripped of podium as Aston Martin to undo Fernando Alonso penalty

Fernando Alonso was handed a 10-second penalty by the FIA after the 2023 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

George Russell is set to be demoted back to P4 at the 2023 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, as Aston Martin have a great chance of appealing the post-race penalty Fernando Alonso was slapped with in Saudi Arabia.

Alonso had crossed the finish line in P3 to score his second consecutive podium for the Silverstone-based team.

However, he was handed a 10-second post-race penalty for incorrectly serving his 5-second time penalty – which he was awarded for being out of position in his grid slot at the race start.

Specifically, a jack was touching the car while Alonso was still serving the penalty in his pit-box.

READ: Saudi GP: Cracks beginning to show in Lewis Hamilton and George Russell relationship

This led to the FIA penalising Alonso, in the same manner Esteban Ocon was penalised for incorrectly serving his penalty at the 2023 Bahrain Grand Prix.

However, while Ocon was notified of this additional penalty during the race, Alonso was penalised after the grand prix was over.

And crucially, as Alonso – whose infringement took place on lap 19 out of 50 – wasn’t notified of his second penalty within 30 laps of it taking place, it seems Aston Martin have an excellent chance of successfully appealing and reversing it.

This is because the regulations stipulate that the FIA stewards have a maximum of 30 laps to inform a driver of a penalty; otherwise they escape punishment for the infringement.

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If Aston Martin can successfully reverse the penalty, it would see the Spaniard reclaim his podium, while Russell would drop back to P4, one position ahead of Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton.

READ: Lewis Hamilton heartbreak as he narrowly misses out on P4 after Fernando Alonso penalty

Speaking after the race, Russell admitted that the penalty was “pretty harsh”, though the Mercedes driver certainly wasn’t complaining.

“I’m pleased to come home in P4, but I think the penalty for Fernando was pretty harsh,” Russell said in a post-race interview.

“They are deserving podium finishers today. But I’ll take an extra trophy, so I’m not complaining too much.”