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Spanish body slams Renault penalty

The Spanish motorsport federation has criticised as "unusual and disproportionate" the penalty imposed on the Renault team at the Hungarian Grand Prix

The French squad was suspended from this month's European Grand Prix after the FIA's race officials deemed the team had released Fernando Alonso from his pitstop without the wheel-nut retaining device securely in place during the Hungaroring race.

The stewards also said Renault had not taken any action to stop the car from leaving the pitlane.

Renault has appealed the penalty, but the decision of the appeal won't be known until August 18, just three days ahead of the start of practice for the Valencia event.

It means it makes it likely that the team will have to travel to Spain not knowing if it will be allowed to race.

The Spanish federation revealed on Monday it had written to the FIA's International Court of Appeal, saying the stewards' decision created "an unusual and disproportionate penalty that hurts the team's drivers (especially Fernando Alonso), the European Grand Prix, the promoters, the sponsoring companies of the GP and the driver, the citizens, and the city of Valencia directly and seriously."

The body asks the Court of Appeal to annul the penalty or to substitute it for a different one that "would not affect the drivers' right to participate at the European Grand Prix."

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