Aston Martin will not appeal Fernando Alonso penalty at Australian GP

In the closing stages of last weekend’s Australian Grand Prix perhaps the biggest question was whether Mercedes driver George Russell would be able to catch Fernando Alonso for sixth place. Russell was chasing the Aston Martin driver down on a fresher set of tires, as the two entered the tricky Turn 6-Turn 7 of the Albert Park Circuit.

Suddenly, Russell closed the gap to the rear of Alonso’s AMR24 in a hurry, and pulled to the side to avoid a collision. In an instant Russell was in the gravel, and seconds later, his W15 was on its side, right in the racing line:

Following the race both Alonso and Russell were summoned to meet with race stewards for a review of the incident. After hearing from both drivers, and reviewing the available telemetry data, race officials handed down a penalty to Alonso for violating Article 33.4 of the Sporting Regulations, and driving in a “potentially dangerous” manner.

On Tuesday Aston Martin confirmed in a statement from Team Principal Mike Krack that they are not going to raise a right of review for the penalty, and will accept the decision. In a message directed to fans of the team, Krack addressed the penalty.

“To receive a 20-second time penalty when there was no contact with the following car has been a bitter pill to swallow, but we have to accept our decision. We made our best case but without new evidence we are unable to request a right of review,” said Krack.

The statement, which you can see in full here, also included a show of support for Alonso.

“Firstly, in motorsport everyone is relieved that George was ok and walked away after his accident. I want you to know that we fully support Fernando. He is the most experienced driver in Formula One. He has competed in more Grands Prix than anyone else and has more than 20-years of experience. He is a multiple World Champion in multiple categories,” said Krack.

“Fernando is a phenomenal race and he was using every tool in his toolbox to finish ahead of George — just like we saw in Brazil last year with Sergio [Pérez]. This is the Art of Motorsport at the highest level. He would never put anyone in harm’s way,” added Krack.

Alonso and Pérez were locked in a hard-fought battle for P3 at last year’s São Paulo Grand Prix, one that eventually saw Alonso come out on top.

F1 has a week off before the grid returns to action, with next week’s Japanese Grand Prix.

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