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Official: Renault suspended from European GP

NEWS STORY
26/07/2009

Following their investigation into the incident which saw a wheel come off Fernando Alonso's car shortly after his first pit stop today, the Race Stewards in Hungary have suspended Renault from the next round of the World Championship.

Having viewed the available film recordings and radio recordings, and having met the Renault team manager twice the stewards ruled that:

  • The competitor knowingly released Alonso without one of the retaining devices for the wheel-nuts being securely in position, this being an indication that the wheel itself may not have been properly secured.
  • Being aware of this failed to take any action to prevent the car from leaving the pitlane.
  • Failed to inform Alonso of this problem or to advise him to take appropriate action given the circumstances, even though the driver contacted the team by radio believing he had a puncture.
  • This resulted in a heavy car part detaching at Turn 5 and the wheel itself detaching at Turn 9.
  • Having breached Article 23.1.i and Article 3.2 of the 2009 FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations, the stewards ruled that the ING Renault F1 Team is suspended from the next event, the European Grand Prix in Valencia.

    Although the penalty might appear harsh, it must be remembered that following recent incidents which saw Henry Surtees killed and Felipe Massa incur a fracture to his skull, motor sport is in the spotlight, especially when it comes to components falling from cars.

  • To check out our Hungarian GP gallery, click here
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