Fernando Alonso received a reprimand and had penalty points on his license after holding up the leading drivers at the Japanese GP in Suzuka on Sunday.
Blue flags ignored
The McLaren-Honda driver ignored the blue flags at the end of lap 51, warning him that faster cars were behind him.
Alonso’s failure to move aside played a role in the battle that ended with Hamilton taking his eighth F1 victory of the season.
“Alonso was shown a solid blue indicator light of his dash and waved blue flags between Turn 14 and Turn 15 on Lap 51,” reads a report from the stewards at Suzuka.
“He also had received a flashing blue light informing him that race leader Lewis Hamilton was closing on him for over a lap before. Alonso let Hamilton pass during Lap 52 at Turn 11.
“The drivers have been told in drivers’ briefings that the provisions of the International Sporting Code, that they ‘must allow the following car to pass at the earliest opportunity’ means that they should do this for lapping cars regardless of their current battle.
“Stewards concluded that Alonso did not do this. Alonso noted in the hearing that there was an opportunity to allow Hamilton to pass on the front straight, but not thereafter until Turn 11”.
According to the Spaniard, there were limited options of letting Hamilton through.
Alonso’s first reprimand of the season
The stewards accepted Alonso’s explanation, and rather than issuing any time penalty, he was handed a reprimand and two penalty points on his racing license.
This is the first reprimand of the season for the Spaniard.
In the F1, three driving reprimands would result on a ten-place grid penalty, while 12 penalty points on a racing license in 12 months, would result in a race ban.
- United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland