FIA to review ‘conflicting precedents’ in Alonso penalty
By Mat Coch
Monday 20th March, 2023 - 10:20am
The FIA has confirmed F1’s Sporting Advisory Committee will discuss “conflicting precedents” following Fernando Alonso’s post-race penalty at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.
Fernando Alonso picked up a five-second time penalty after starting out of his grid box in Jeddah.
Alonso copped a 10-second post-race penalty when it was deemed his original penalty had not been served correctly.
FIA Stewards initially handed out a post-race penalty after deeming the rear jack making contact.
Under their interpretation, that constituted ‘working on the car’.
Aston Martin subsequently exercised its Right to Review and submitted footage of other instances where that had gone unpunished.
The penalty was overturned and the underlying issue will be discussed ahead of the Australian Grand Prix.
“The request to the Stewards for review of the initial decision (Document 51) was made in the last lap of the race,” an FIA spokesperson said.
“The subsequent decision of the stewards to hear and grant the Right of Review by the Competitor was the result of new evidence regarding the definition of ‘working on the car’, for which there were conflicting precedents, and this has been exposed by this specific circumstance.
“This topic will therefore be addressed at the next Sporting Advisory Committee taking place on Thursday, 23 March, and a clarification will be issued ahead of the 2023 FIA Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix.
“This open approach to the review and improvement of its processes is part of the FIA’s ongoing mission to regulate the sport in a fair and transparent way.”
Alonso was critical of the FIA for the way in which it handled the penalty.
He highlighted the time between the infraction taking place and when the investigation was launched.
According to official timing screens, officials began looking at the incident 13 minutes after the race had finished.
The decision to penalise Alonso took another 12 minutes, drawing it out beyond the podium ceremony.
The Australian Grand Prix begins on March 30.
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