F1 | Canadian GP | Szafnauer on Alonso's penalty that made him lose 2 positions: "It wasn't deserved"
Alpine team principal, Otmar Szafnauer, disagreed on the decision of the stewards to give Fernando Alonso a penalty for “repeatedly changing direction” in the last lap.
A swinging weekend for Fernando Alonso in Montreal, Canada. The Spaniard from Alpine did a great job last Saturday, in qualifying, conquering a second position in some very wet and tricky conditions, while on Sunday he was unlucky with the strategy, he did not show a good race pace - also due to a problem related to the power unit - and he crossed the line in seventh position immediately behind his teammate Esteban Ocon.
“We don’t know what it is yet, it looks like it was an air leak somewhere, but from where I don’t know,” said Szafnauer on the PU issue, post-race.
“That manifested itself in some higher temperatures and then you had to manage, so we were limited down the straight.”
At the end of the Canadian GP, however, Alonso was penalised by the stewards for a too aggressive defense, two laps from the end, against Valtteri Bottas' Alfa Romeo, in which he changed direction more than once on the straight, forcing the Finn to even take his foot off the accelerator to avoid the contact with his car. The penalty amounted to 5 seconds and saw him lose two important positions and also four points for the team.
Alonso picked up a 5-second time penalty on the penultimate lap for this defending on Sunday ❌— Formula 1 (@F1) June 21, 2022
The Spaniard was found to have changed direction more than once while trying to keep Bottas behind him#CanadianGP #F1 pic.twitter.com/FABZDqdqCw
Alpine team principal, Otmar Szafnauer, however, disagreed on the decision of the stewards to give the Spaniard a penalty. “Was it deserved? No,” he stated after the race. Then he added that he was “not frustrated” with it “but it’s always good not to get those penalties and finish high, for sure.”
He also commented on the episode that involved Alonso requesting to swap positions with his teammate, Ocon, but the box didn't allow it. “We were [sixth and seventh], right, so what do you want to do, allow them to race or swap them to be [sixth and seventh] again?” he commented.
“I’m all in favour of allowing them to race, but you’ve got to remember Fernando had a powertrain issue that, he had a leak that caused him to not have the straight-line speed. Esteban graciously waited for him, so he could have a DRS train, which was the right thing to protect him from Bottas.”