F1 | Turkish GP | Fernando Alonso apologies to Mick Schumacher for their crash
The Spanish driver is extremely sorry for his Turn 4 mistake, that ruined Schumacher’s race, and said it was an “unlucky” race for Alpine.
The Turkish GP was definitely not Fernando Alonso's race. After a great qualifying session that allowed him to start in P5, his best seasonal result, the Alpine driver was hit by Pierre Gasly at Turn 1, and spun out of the track.
Alonso returned immediately on track in fourteenth place, but, trying to quickly return in the top ten, at Turn 4 he collided with Haas's Mick Schumacher, sending the German driver off track.
Both accidents were punished by the FIA with a five seconds time penalty, applied during the pit-stops, and two penalty points on their superlicence, the first ones of the year for the Spainiard.
Alonso didn't manage to return in the points after the collisions, ending the race in P16, for the first time in the last four races outside of the top ten, while Schumacher, who had reached Q2 for the first time in his F1 career, finished in nineteenth place, ahead of his teammate Nikita Mazepin.
Speaking post-race, the Alpine driver said it was an "unlucky" race for the team, which feels even more disappointing after such an impressive qualifying session:
"It’s frustrating that when we are not competitive we have a very boring race, and when we are competitive we have crazy weather and crazy things happening. We’ve been historically this year a little bit less competitive on the intermediate tyres, and the whole race was intermediate, we didn’t even put the dry tyres on, so we need to improve our competitive level on that compound," he concluded, summing up his frustration.
The two times World Champion went on to explain his view on the Turn 4 contact with Schumacher, adding his apologies for the mistake:
“I thought I was alongside him, but obviously it was a late move, so we touched each other. Unfortunately, he had the spin, and I got the penalty. I take it, of course. I’m sorry to have the collision with him."
"Obviously that happened only because I was P14. I should not have been in that position. The luck seems to keep avoiding us this year big time. I guess we are accumulating a lot for next year," he added, wishing for better things to come in the new era for the French team.
The Haas driver wasn't particularly upset with Alonso, and shrugged it off as a kind of racing incident that can happen to everyone:
“Especially in those kinds of corners where you have a long corner in front and then you prepare for Turn 4, it's really easy to just try a divebomb. But unfortunately this time it didn't work out. We learn and we'll move on."
However, Schumacher still felt pretty satisfied with his performance, in spite of missing out on a better final result after what he called his best weekend in F1 "up to the race":
“Overall I think yeah, we can be very happy about what we did and we were very close from the beginning, it just seemed like the gap to all the cars was smaller than usual," he concluded.