Alonso: I no longer consider F1 a sport

World champion Fernando Alonso has said he no longer considers Formula One a sport after he was penalized for blocking Felipe Massa in qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix

Alonso: I no longer consider F1 a sport

The Renault driver, close to tears at a packed press conference at the Renault motorhome on Sunday morning, said that the FIA's decision to delete his three fastest laps had changed his view on what F1 was all about.

"I did my lap without blocking anyone intentionally," said Alonso, speaking in front of video screens showing on board footage from Massa's cars of the incident.

"I love the sport, I love the fans coming here, a lot of them from Spain, but I don't consider F1 anymore a sport."

Alonso insisted that he did not block Massa deliberately and said that if he was penalized for what happened this time then it would likely lead to problems in the future.

"If you see the video, then if this is blocking intentionally we will have a lot of problems from now on in qualifying. If this is blocking, I don't understand how we will race today if this is the minimum distance (between cars)."

Team boss Flavio Briatore made it clear that Alonso had not impeded Massa deliberately - and that he had only completed his out lap in qualifying at such a speed because he needed to get across the start-finish line before the chequered flag came out.

"Yesterday Fernando was penalised for the lap, and I want only to tell you, Fernando never intentionally wanted to stop Massa," explained Briatore.

"You know, he had a tyre accident. Fernando come back to the pits, we checked on the chassis and it was quite dangerous to send Fernando out again.

"But we are fighting for the championship and the people need to see a show. This is the reason why we love the sport, this is the reason why Fernando go out and he made the chequered flag to start his quickest lap by one second.

"We told him by radio to drive like a qualifying lap on his out lap because really we were very, very tight, because we check the chassis and the suspension. He did a perfect job and we had no intention to stop Massa.

"We don't want to argue with the decision, but we tell you what is our position - we are quite sad that this happened and Fernando takes the risk to do this lap.

"We need to recognise that when you send the driver out in the position he was, he takes a lot of risk."

shares
comments
Hamilton to test for McLaren this month

Previous article

Hamilton to test for McLaren this month

Next article

Uproar in Spain following Alonso's penalty

Uproar in Spain following Alonso's penalty
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Fernando Alonso
Author Jonathan Noble
Why McLaren doesn’t doubt Ricciardo can escape his ‘dark’ place Plus

Why McLaren doesn’t doubt Ricciardo can escape his ‘dark’ place

Three points finishes from as many starts represents a decent opening innings on paper, but Daniel Ricciardo has endured a tough start to his McLaren career - only magnified his team-mate's excellent form. Yet both he and the team have good reason to expect a turnaround soon

Formula 1
May 6, 2021
What needs to “change” for Red Bull is ending Verstappen’s errors Plus

What needs to “change” for Red Bull is ending Verstappen’s errors

OPINION: Going up against the dominant force of Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton was always going to demand the best from Red Bull and Max Verstappen. But after making a couple more errors during the Portuguese Grand Prix, the Dutch driver showed there's a small gap he still needs to close in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight

Formula 1
May 5, 2021
The "subtle" Red Bull upgrades that kept it in the Portugal F1 mix Plus

The "subtle" Red Bull upgrades that kept it in the Portugal F1 mix

Red Bull's Portuguese Grand Prix fortunes were decidedly second best to Mercedes', but the result skews the potential that the team had at Portimao. With a new set of updates, the team looks good going forward into the rest of 2021's spicy F1 competition

Formula 1
May 3, 2021
Portuguese Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Portuguese Grand Prix Driver Ratings

The 2021 Portuguese GP will for several drivers go down as a weekend of missed opportunities amid imperfect track conditions that caused struggles with tyre warmup. But the performances of a select few stood out from the crowd

Formula 1
May 3, 2021
How Hamilton took a “completely different journey” to Portugal victory Plus

How Hamilton took a “completely different journey” to Portugal victory

Just as he did in 2020, Lewis Hamilton had to come from behind to win the 2021 Portuguese Grand Prix. Only this time there were two rivals he had to pass, among the several challenges he had to overcome, on his way to securing a 97th grand prix victory

Formula 1
May 3, 2021
The ‘big fish’ mentality that kept an Australian legend winning Plus

The ‘big fish’ mentality that kept an Australian legend winning

Frank Gardner was the veteran of just eight grand prix starts. It could have been more, but why waste his talent if the cars weren't up to it? NIGEL ROEBUCK recalls the life of one of racing's great characters

Formula 1
May 2, 2021
Why Todt’s FIA successor could be cut from the same cloth Plus

Why Todt’s FIA successor could be cut from the same cloth

Jean Todt has signalled that he will not stand for re-election as FIA president. MARK GALLAGHER analyses the strong credentials of one potential successor…

Formula 1
May 1, 2021
The data that leaves both Red Bull and Mercedes uncertain of supremacy at Portimao Plus

The data that leaves both Red Bull and Mercedes uncertain of supremacy at Portimao

Lewis Hamilton topped the crucial FP2 session on Friday as F1 returned to Portugal, but his Mercedes team cannot be sure it has the edge on its Red Bull rivals. As cool temperatures and wind combine with the still-slippery surface to present drivers with quandaries over set-up and tyre warmup, there's still everything to play for come qualifying

Formula 1
Apr 30, 2021