Lance Stroll has been hit with a three-place grid penalty for causing a high-speed collision with Fernando Alonso in the United States Grand Prix.
Alonso was attempting to overtake Stroll on the back straight towards Turn 12 and pulled out from the slipstream at close to 200mph but the Aston Martin moved left just afterwards, with the Spaniard being launched into the air as he hit the back of Stroll’s car. While Stroll crashed heavily and retired, Alonso landed after an airborne spell and was able to continue despite a damaged car.
The stewards decided to review the incident after the race and after speaking to both drivers deemed Stroll to be worthy of a three-place grid penalty to be taken in Mexico, as well as two penalty points.
“It was clear to us that the driver of (Car No. 18) made a late move in reacting to the overtaking attempt by the driver of (Car No. 14) by moving to the left,” the decision read. “The stewards determine that the driver of (Car No. 18) was predominantly to blame.”
Despite that outcome, Alonso — who will partner Stroll at Aston Martin from next season — stated he didn’t believe the collision was anything more than a racing incident.
“Honestly, when you see the thing on the TV it is a racing incident,” Alonso said. “We move at the same time to the left and that was the trigger of everything. I think it was very unfortunate for everyone.
“We’ve known each other for a long time,” the Spaniard continued. “We were OK in the stewards’ room. I think it was more between our sporting directors than between us. I think we saw the incident with the same eyes and our sporting directors were seeing it with completely different eyes! Sure (Stroll appeared to react), but when you are at 300 (kph) those movements…in 0.1s of a second you move 200 meters. So if you see it in slow motion and you go frame-by-frame he will move a little bit later than me. If you go normal speed, you see both cars more or less at the same time. That’s why after looking on TV I think there’s nothing you can do differently.”
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