Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Yas Marina, 2013

Alonso: Vergne should get penalty for pit exit incident

2013 Abu Dhabi Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Yas Marina, 2013Fernando Alonso believes Jean-Eric Vergne should be penalised following the incident between the pair during the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Alonso came out of the pits near the Toro Rosso driver following his final pit stop, then went over the run-off at the exit of turn three to move ahead of Vergne.

Speaking to reporters after the race Alonso said: “Obviously it’s always a little bit of a question mark what [the stewards] will decide.”

“You need to leave a space always when you have a car alongside you. He didn’t give a space and I was forced to be out of the track so my opinion he should be penalised, in his opinion I overtake outside the track so we’ll see.”

Alonso believes he was unlikely to finish higher than he did given his qualifying position.

“Obviously we lost a lot of time in traffic but looking at the pole position, 20 seconds in front of us I think fifth was the maximum anyway, with or without traffic. So perfectly happy.

“One Mercedes in front, one behind. One Lotus in front, one behind. So minimised the championship, in the constructors’, loss.”

Update: No penalty for Alonso over Vergne incident

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Image ?? Ferrari/Ercole Colombo

87 comments on “Alonso: Vergne should get penalty for pit exit incident”

  1. April’s fool in November? I don’t buy that Fer

    1. I dont think anybody forced you to buy anything :)

    2. Ok so no penalty for alonso and whatever is written below is rubbish!

    3. By FIA driving standards, its perfectly legit to push others out of the track. If you dont gain position by pushing them out, stewards will give you that position because you pushed them out. Ask from Perez about details how to do it successfully. It works..

      Alonso´s penalty should be no brainer..

  2. WHAT!?
    He overtook Vergne out off the track and asks the penalty for him!? his cheek has no limits! Teflonso!
    Hope the stewards will punish him!

      1. Vergne cut across him when he was exiting the pits, this incident is about as much Alonso’s fault as Hamilton vs Rosberg Bahrain 2012 was Lewis’ fault.

        1. When Hamilton overtook Rosberg outside of the track? That was an illegal pass.

          1. When Rosberg shoved him off? Yep, that’s the time.

            Although that said, I think this was a racing incident

        2. @kingshark
          Vergne took the racing line. This isn’t some flat out corner where the cars have enough grip to change direction on the exit. Once he has got on the gas he can’t do anything. Unless you want him to lift off the throttle, but since Alonso was behind, I don’t see why he should have done that.

          1. @mads
            If Vergne took the “racing line”, then why was he about 3 car widths wider than Massa behind him around that corner?

            Anyway, I have no idea how anyone could blame Alonso for this, he was only exiting the pits, and Vergne unnecessarily cut him off.

          2. @kingshark

            I have no idea how anyone could blame Alonso for this

            What a surprise.

    1. They didn’t penalize him.

      Why on earth they didn’t? Beats me. Surely Vergne isn’t the one who deserved a penalty there. Maybe its Ferrari thinking, they remembered when Bourdais got a penalty because Massa cut across him in 2008!

  3. As long as Vergne didn’t cut across the pit exit line whilst Alonso was there, I don’t see how that argument could hold water at all Alonso.

    1. @vettel1
      He did cut across, compare Massa’s line with Vergne’s line on the exit of the pits, you will see that Vergne deliberately took a much wider line to cut Alonso off.

      1. Over the white line though and impeding Alonso @kingshark? Both would have to be true for Vergne to be considered in line for having a penalty.

        1. Over the white line though and impeding Alonso kingshark? Both would have to be true for Vergne to be considered in line for having a penalty.

          Yes, Vergne did cross the white line (pit-lane exit) and cut off out in front of Alonso.

          Vergne took a very shallow line through turn 3, and when you compare that to the very tight line taken by Massa, it became obvious that he was attempting to impede Alonso.

          1. No, Vergne did not cross the white line defining the pit exit.

          2. Or, contrary, that Massa was told not to hold up Alonso @kingshark.

    2. Imagine a car being alongside the other (doesn’t matter if completely or just next to rear wheel). When the driver who is being overtaken moves his car towards the track limits so the other car is being pushed out of the track and this happens in a straight, that is not allowed. If the same happens in a corner it is allowed. And if the driver being pushed out manages to still get ahead then getting ahead is not allowed. It is handled just like purposely deciding to take a line outside track limits in order to carry higher speed to overtake someone. Maybe there is no better way to make rules but to me this doesn’t seem ideal.

      Unsurprisingly I agree with Alonso that he was next to Vergne and had no space left but very likely he will still get a penalty but well this sort of things happen, racing with others is always riskier than breezing ahead ;)

    3. Niki Lauda:” as a driver I would have done what Fernando did…..but you knever know what stewards do. ” I value his opinion more than most talking heads here.

      1. And you have to admit, that illegal or not, it was a brave move and a joy to watch.

  4. No Alonso, I think you’re the one who should be penalised.

    1. Old office trick..before got blamed, blame other.

  5. He didn’t give a space

    And all the time, you have to leave a space!

    Even though the pit exit prevents both the driver on the track and coming out of the pitlane of their usual view of the other driver. Let’s see what the stewards decide, based on their footage.

    1. I thought the rule was only about corner entry, you see drivers all the time push out the other car on corner exit.

  6. “All the time you hafta leava space!”

    The thing is that this sort of thing is legal, even though it probably shouldn’t be. It would be dangerous if the tracks weren’t lined with acres of tarmac.

  7. If ALO escapes a punishment then the FIA and the stewards reduce any point they tried to make during the season about track limits to a pointless joke.

    1. @tmf42 They already did that when they let Alonso, among many others, get away with abusing the track limits in qualifying. Not to mention the joke of a situation we had in India.

      1. @red-andy – I wouldn’t go that far as they had a clear agreement in India and Abu-Dhabi about qualifying – but during race-days they were more or less consistent.

    2. And now it’s official – the stewards just went to show that they can’t shake the old habit of being inconsistent.

  8. Don’t think JEV should get a penalty, but neither should Alonso. Racing incident due to position of pit exit

    1. Exactly!

    2. I agree, could be both or none but not just one

    3. agree.. nothing to discuss here i think.. you are racing, you want to keep your position.. nothing happened to any of these guys which is important.. i would just let it be.. off topic: i wonder if vettel will get another reprimand for today´s doughnuts..

    4. Mr win or lose
      3rd November 2013, 16:12

      Maybe they should reconsider the pit exit for this track. It’s a little dangerous.

    5. That’s the fairest outcome to my mind.

    6. Agreed. Why does every incident always have to be someone’s fault these days.
      Good decision to give no penalty.

  9. Didn’t see that statement coming. If someone should get penalty form that situation it’s Alonso IMO.

  10. No penalty either way for me. If this had nothing to do with the pit lane, and Alonso was in the position, then a penalty for Vergne would be just because there is the rule of always leaving a cars width on the outside if a car is there. No penalty for Alonso as he has been forced off. Nothing wrong on either part.

    1. To save face probably the FIA will issue a ineffective penalty (say 5 or 10 seconds) and be dono with it. There’s really no way for them to be consistent, in previous instances thaey have acted seemingly at random.

  11. Didn’t hear that in several Alonso’s interviews. Source?

      1. yeah I know this is the page we are on

    1. He said it right in the RTL interview afterwards. Can’t say something about other sources.

      1. what tv channel has broadcasted that?

    2. I have seen him saying that in Spanish after the race talking with Antena 3 and TV3

    3. @palmerstoneroad As noted in the article, he said it to reporters after the race. Are you accusing me of making this up?

      1. of course not…i have just asked since he did not mention that in several interviews for ITA Sky F1 channel

  12. Guys, are you serious!?

    From the FIA F1 Driving protocol and penalties of 2013
    20.4 Any driver defending his position on a straight, and before any braking area, may use the full width of the track during his first move, provided no significant portion of the car attempting to pass is alongside his. Whilst defending in this way the driver may not leave the track without justifiable reason.
    For the avoidance of doubt, if any part of the front wing of the car attempting to pass is alongside the rear wheel of the car in front this will be deemed to be a ‘significant portion’.

    There is a moment, before leaving the track, where ALO is completely out of the pitlane, with all four wheels on track and exactly alongside VER.

    1. If you re-read the full point you’ve quoted you’ll see why it doesn’t apply here:

      Any driver defending his position on a straight, and before any braking area, may use the full width of the track during his first move

      This is not what Vergne was doing – he was driving along the track on the racing line when Alonso appeared out of the pits. Vergne made no defensive moves, so he was not obliged to leave space.

      1. It is arguable that Vergne would not have run that wide if he wasn´t “defending”.
        So I would still argue he made a defensive move, even though it was just gently running wide.

        1. @scratt

          It is arguable that Vergne would not have run that wide if he wasn’t “defending”.

          Which is irrelevant because the rule says:

          Any driver defending his position on a straight, and before any braking area

          Vergne was in a corner, not on a straight, nor was he approaching a braking area (not for another two corners, at least).

        2. As Vergne himself has stated after the race, (explaining why HE did not think Alonso deserved a penalty) he was not making a defensive move at all @scratt.

          Instead, he expected Alonso to be close but because he did not see him, he thought Alonso was ahead of them, as he did not see him right behind. Therefore Vergne stayed on his line and was glad that Alonso took evasive action to avoid a collision.

      2. This is not what Vergne was doing – he was driving along the track on the racing line when Alonso appeared out of the pits. Vergne made no defensive moves, so he was not obliged to leave space.

        If you have another car (as fast, if not faster than you) completely alongside you, and you push it off track… well, that is called “defending the position”.
        Maybe Vergne did not expect Alonso to be there, but Alonso couldn’t just disappear.

        1. @keithcollantine

          he was driving along the track on the racing line when Alonso appeared out of the pits. Vergne made no defensive moves, so he was not obliged to leave space.

          Vergne was not driving on the racing line and did make a deliberate move to block Alonso. Compare Vergne’s line to Massa’s line through that corner, and it becomes obvious that Vergne deliberately moved across to cut Alonso off.

          1. @kingshark
            You can’t compare them like that.
            Massa’s usual racing line isn’t necessarily the same as Vergne’s.
            If Massa lifted earlier then Vergne into the corner, then Massa would be able to take a tighter line on the exit. You have to look at Vergne’s previous laps and how he took that corner to know his racing line.

          2. He just took a lot of speed into that corner, If you’ve ever driven a car fast you know that in such a corner JEV really could not have turned more towards the inside of the corner on those old tyres.

          3. @mads and @ardenflo
            Even if (and that’s a big IF) Vergne’s awkward line through that corner was his normal racing line, then he still should have given at least some space to cars exiting the pits. It’s silly that JEV expected Alonso to just disappear.

          4. Cars on track always have the right of way over cars coming from the pits.

          5. @kingshark
            So Vergne should alter his racing line, on every single lap, because a car might exit the pits near him.
            But Alonso has every right to expect the Torro Rosso to suddenly gain infinite grip and just steer clear?
            It’s a corner that you commit to, and once you have done so and punched the throttle there is no backing out. The exit is entirely determined by the entry speed and line. And Vergne had every right to give it full banana going into that corner.

          6. see my comment above @kingshark. Vergne had not seen Alonso right behind/next to him so he was taking his normal line through the corner instead of making room.

            No defensive driving (it was Massa who did see Alonso who left room, and was therefore not on the same line as Vergne)

      3. Clearly your interpretation is not as accurate either, as you profess Keith.

  13. Racing incident for me. If it is taking this long to come to a decision, then I believe they should give Alonso the benefit of doubt.

    It just means, it is not as clear cut as some believe it is.

    1. Fact is, Alonso was illegaly forced out of the track while he was overtaking Vergne, he had no choice but exit the track or crash. True, he could have given back the position afterwards but nobody told him to.

  14. Alonso is right, and at the same time everyone with an opposing view is right. how can you decide such a pass on the exit of a pit lane? its not like other cases before where passing off the track was an advantage, this is a pass where the cars come out at the same point of the track and one has to go off track, its no advantage and their should be no penalty to either driver. Alonso could have spun out… and would have passed the opposing car the next lap anyway.

  15. And while we talk about Alonso, why wasn’t Sutil penalised? No views on that matter?

    1. Nothing really.

      Sutil went wide, expected Maldonado to come back but he went wide too and stuck behind Perez who made a good move. What was Sutil supposed to do, let both pass again?

      1. Sutil was behind or in line with Maldonado. He didnt pass him on track. should have given the place to Maldonado and tried again. Instead he just straightened the corner and continued with the race.

        It doesn’t matter if Perez is in front now, that bad luck for Sutil. But he never passed Maldonado on track.

  16. Clearly, without a doubt a racing incident. If they want to ‘blame’ someone, you can blame the Track designer. Call it a track design fault. It takes about 2 seconds to work that one out !

    1. @punchy: I think the FIA is giving the limits for track design. I doubt he’s allowed to plant a few grass areas of about 2m width right beside the track – followed by other endless tarmac places. That would stop the cutting.

  17. FIA has decided that no penalty for ALO

    1. Cool. Now I don’t have to refer to the Stewards as ‘Stupards’ from now on. Common sense prevails.

  18. No further action will be taken by the stewards.
    I actually agree in this case, but overall this weekend the stewards have shown themselves to be horribly inconsistent.

    The one thing they said they would enforce they did not *at all*.
    Two other penalties spring to mind.
    One for Lotus which bucked previous precedents.
    And the other, an un-safe release, which, again, I agree was exactly that, but is a shame as the punishment affects the driver as well as the team. The FIA really need to change unsafe releases to constructor points and cash fines for the team.

  19. Ferrari International Assistance.
    So Hulkenberg and Ricciardo got penaltys for doing a lot less than that.
    Alonso came out of the pits, looked to the right side, saw Vergne, and decided to continue flat out. He should have lifted, Vergne had no obligation to let Alonso go by.
    This is a joke, to be polite.

    1. Fernando International Assistance.

      Apparently, Felipe Massa is vulnerable to stewards’ penalty.

    2. +1, If the stewards decide that Vergne has done nothing wrong, then Alonso has made an illegal pass outside the track. Otherwise he should have lifted, just like when a driver from behind in other situations find it impossible to pass because the needed space narrows down to nothing.
      We need the off track areas, outside the kerbs, to be much more undrivable, slowing cars down considerably etc. This would also have penalized Sutil, who tried to overtake Maldonado, they battled so hard, they both had to use the run-off area, and Sutil cut the corner completely, came out in front of Maldonado, despite having pulled an overtaking attempt, which didn’t succeed – on track at least. If it had been on a cart track with grass run-off areas, we all know where both Alonso and Sutil would have ended up – behind, which would have been most fair, given circumstances.

  20. I have no yet watched the video (cant find one on youtube yet), but I do race in the junior categories (Formula Renault and Formula 2000). I’m not sure why in F1 they accept that you can go wide and push someone off, because in the lower categories you are tough that under no situation can you do that. Not even at corner exit. If someone is along side you at corner exit, you need to take a much narrower exit to ensure there is no contact.

  21. The surfeit of off-track tarmac run off has warped our view of this whole situation. The bottom line is that if there was stretch of bumpy grass there or a wall, Alonso would not have come down the pit exit with his foot to the floor without a care in the world, even though he could see another car on track heading for the same spot. Alonso just adjusted the design of the track to fit his momentary needs when he saw a car in the place he wanted to go–that was his easy plan B if Hulkenberg did not leap out of his way. Not cricket. It wold be one thing if he took evasive action to avoid a clash between cars with equal claim to the spot and then just resumed. But, no. First, as a car reintering the track, he did not have the same claim to a spot of a car running on the course, second, he is the only one who left the track. Further he made a pass. If someone forces you off the road, even if that was an illegal move, your remedy is not to pass off the track. There is no racing off the track, period.

  22. For me the footage worth more than thousands of words, can anyone of you guys can post a link showing what happened otherwise some silly debates will continue until the next GP, with all my respects

  23. “You need to leave a space always”

    That sounds familiar. But this time, Fernando, you came from behind, from the pit lane, and you have to give precedence to those on track. You were quicker and caught up with Vergne, but it’s your job to avoid contact. Just like two races ago in MotoGP, when Marquez came out of the pit lane and dived onto the racing line, where Lorenzo was approaching, and the two collided. Of course you don’t have to stop and let everyone through, but as you’re joining the action you have to make sure you do so in the correct manner. And, still, you were behind and overtook him by cutting the track. If he deserves a penalty, back off and overtake him later, rather than doing yourself something against the rules.

  24. A blue flag is shown at the pit exit for a reason, Fernando!

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