After the restart after the safety car on lap 22, Stroll and Alonso were fighting for seventh place when the Spaniard fell out of the Canadian’s wake on the long back straight of the Circuit of the Americas.
But before the two-time champion could complete the overtake, and appearing to react to Alonso, Stroll moved to the left and they both suffered a shocking accident. The Spaniard was thrown into the air with both wheels and ended up against the wall, and the Canadian spun and stopped in the middle of the track.
Lance Stroll retired on the spot with extensive damage to his car, but Alonso’s Alpine survived and, after pitting for necessary repairs, managed a very creditable seventh place.
Pending the investigation of the FIA stewards , for which both drivers have been summoned, the Aston Martin driver declared that the collision was not as clear as it seemed, since he thought that Alonso left him little margin during his attempt to overtaking.
Asked if he acknowledged moving too late, Stroll said, “Well, I mean, yeah, I moved late, but there was a big difference in speed.”
“I was judging more or less, figuring out where he was behind me. But it’s not like I hit him on the side of his car. The impact is still from his front wing against the rear of my car.
“I gave him a lot of room to the left of the court, so it’s not like I backed him into a wall or anything. He could have moved earlier and gone more to the left. He didn’t have to get that close to me either.”
“So there are many different ways to look at the incident,” he insisted. “It was a shame. It was a wheel-to-wheel battle and unfortunately there was a touch.”
Next season Alonso will move from Alpine to Aston Martin to become Stroll’s new teammate, but Stroll said the accident will not affect their relationship: “I don’t see it that way. We are drivers. It can happen in a race.” .
Until that point, Aston Martin was on course for its best result of the season, as both Stroll and team-mate Sebastian Vettel lapped at the front of the top 10 during the early part of the race.
Despite a slow final pitstop, Vettel salvaged eighth position after a brave overtake of Kevin Magnussen’s Haas on the final lap of a race won by Max Verstappen.
Do you want to read our news before anyone else and for free? Follow us here on our Telegram channel and you won’t miss a thing. All the information, at your fingertips!