After listening to Haas and Alpine this Thursday in Mexico , the FIA has decided to admit the protest against Alonso ‘s car, which recovers its points and the 7th place achieved in the United States GP . However, the FIA initially rejected Alpine’s appeal, before making its final decision.
More than two hours after the United States GP race last Sunday, Haas filed a protest against Alonso’s Alpine and Pérez’s Red Bull for having loose parts in their cars, which they considered a dangerous situation.
The FIA called both teams to declare and finally they ended up sanctioning Alonso with a stop and go translated in 30 seconds that made him lose all the points when he fell from the 7th position in which he had reached the finish line to the 15th.
In the statement indicating the reasons for sanctioning Fernando Alonso, the FIA admitted that the driver had not been shown the black and orange flag during the race to warn him to enter the pits and fix the loose piece that would end up falling off (the rear-view mirror).
Alpine decided to appeal Haas’s protest, considering first that Alonso was innocent and that in fact Haas’s protest “was filed 24 minutes after the specified deadline , should not have been accepted, and therefore the penalty should be accepted.” be considered invalid.
The FIA summoned Haas and Alpine for this Thursday in Mexico, and after listening to both parties, they have announced that they accept the appeal presented by the French team regarding Alonso’s car and therefore the stop and go penalty is withdrawn of 30 seconds.
Alpine’s initial appeal was declared “inadmissible” by the stewards earlier in the evening, but the French team’s subsequent right to review was now considered admissible and led to the annulment of the sanction imposed on Fernando Alonso at United States Grand Prix Final. In this way, the Spaniard now recovers the seventh position that he brilliantly won on the track.
Alpine’s appeal claimed that race management had not informed Alonso that his car was damaged (they did not show him the black and orange flag) and also argued that Haas had lodged his protest 24 minutes after the deadline. Haas claimed that the FIA had given him an extra hour to lodge the protest as they had not been able to meet the initial deadline.
The FIA initially ruled on Thursday that Alpine’s protest was inadmissible, as the regulations did not allow an appeal.
That prompted Alpine to apply for the right of review , citing significant new evidence that “it was not until 8:53 p.m. on race day that the team became aware that the original protest was filed 24 minutes after the usual 30-minute window.
Alpine also argued that it was not until Sunday night’s hearing in Austin that he knew which race management had informed Haas, which also becomes significant new evidence.
When the FIA declared Ferrari’s protest admissible, another meeting took place on Thursday night in Mexico, where it was proven that Haas could have lodged a handwritten protest within 30 minutes of the race, so there could have been complied with the regulation.
Therefore, the stewards understood that Haas’s initial protest was not admissible and it was annulled, which means that Alonso recovers the seventh position of the United States Grand Prix.
As part of the ruling, the stewards said they were concerned that Alonso was allowed to stay on the track with his rear-view mirror loose and then fell, so they “strongly recommend that procedures be put in place to control such matters.” “, and that the teams be informed via radio messages or the black and orange flag.
The stewards added: “We also understand that the FIA President has initiated a review of the use of the black and orange flag.
On Thursday, before the media, Alonso had said that he hoped the correct decision would be made: “We basically appealed because Haas’s protest was presented out of time and there were a couple of things: one, that the FIA did not show me the black flag and orange, so they thought it was safe to continue driving that car. Then the car came to parc fermé and passed all the checks, they gave it the green light. And then the protest came too late.”
Alonso had warned of the enormous precedent that Formula 1 would set if the sanction had been upheld: “I think there is no doubt that that was not the right decision. And if that is the right decision to make, it will open up a big problem for the future.” in Formula 1″.
“Because then I think that 50, 60 or 70% of the cars will have to retire when they have an aerodynamic device that is not well repaired, because the car will not be safe. And it will also open the debate on whether it is allowed to protest 20 minutes later. because it’s not considered too late… is one month too late? one hour? 10 years? When is it too late?”
“That, I think, we can’t afford. As I said, this is a very important day for our sport. I don’t care about seventh place, I’m not fighting for the world championship. But if this goes ahead, I think we will open a very… we don’t want to open that box.”
In addition, during the day on Thursday, during various times of the day, in Spain the hashtag #JusticeForAlonso was a trend on Twitter, with which fans asked for justice to be done. It was finally done.