No penalty for Alonso over Vergne incident

2013 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Yas Marina, 2013The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix stewards have taken no action over the incident between Fernando Alonso and Jean-Eric Vergne during the race.

Alonso was investigated for “allegedly leaving the track and gaining an advantage” at turn three when he overtook the Toro Rosso driver.

The stewards ruled that “While car three [Alonso] did leave the track at turn three to four the stewards believe that he had no choice, as car eighteen [Vergne] closed on him.”

“Car eighteen was at the end of his stint with worn tyres and was fully committed to the turn as car three exited the pits. Telemetry confirms that car three was significantly faster, on option tyres, and had the advantage throughout the sequence. The drivers’ explanations were completely clear.

“Therefore the stewards determine that neither car could avoid the incident, and no advantage was gained as a result of the incident.”

Alonso blamed Vergne for the incident, saying the Toro Rosso driver left him insufficient space.

2013 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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147 comments on No penalty for Alonso over Vergne incident

  1. Alskie said on 3rd November 2013, 17:40

    I call ********!

  2. Alexandre Freitas (@piquet-brasil-sc) said on 3rd November 2013, 17:41

    They should change the pit lane exit for next year.

  3. Dafffid (@dafffid) said on 3rd November 2013, 17:48

    Red car rule returns. Regardless of Vergne’s tyres, he was on racing line and if there was a wall Alonso would have had to get out of it or crash. Ridiculous decision.

  4. JAVIER RAMOS said on 3rd November 2013, 17:49

    it’s clear that there are 2 different criteria for applying rules… one for Alonso and Ferrari, the ther one fr the rest of the drivers, that’s as maFIA always did…

  5. Mike Dee (@mike-dee) said on 3rd November 2013, 17:51

    Don’t they have blue flags at the pit exit?

  6. evered7 (@evered7) said on 3rd November 2013, 17:55

    So Alonso never gets punished is what is the view of most here? Anybody forget Valencia, GB 2010?

  7. Slr (@slr) said on 3rd November 2013, 17:56

    Going by the rule book he should have been penalised, however considering that the stewards have turned a blind eye all weekend to drivers exceeding the track limits it would have been a bit unfair on Alonso to receive a penalty. I’m not saying two wrongs make a right, but I feel that regarding the matter of drivers exceeding the track limits, the stewards should either penalise everyone who infringes the rule, or no one at all.

    • Corrado (@corrado-dub) said on 3rd November 2013, 18:19


      Finally a good comment. So many drivers went off-track this GP weekend in different corners, so giving ALO a penalty for going off-track would have been a biased decision. How about Massa going off-track in his last run from Q1, how about Vettel in his last run from Q3 etc etc ? I’m glad they did not give any penalty to ALO. That was 1 of the nice moments of the race. Also, Vergne had no fault. ALO was the 1 who pushed the things. There were some moments where some other drivers/teams could have been penalised, but the stewards let them “escape”. I really don’t see any favouritism towards Ferrari. Plus, I think the stewards let ALO “escape” because the position for which he fought wasn’t that “rewarding” either. If that fight would have been for one of the podium places, I don’t he would have escaped any penalty at all.

    • KaIIe (@kaiie) said on 3rd November 2013, 18:24

      What is strange is that they specifically told the drivers this weekend that they would enforce the track limit rules very strictly, and then nothing happened apart from a few penalties in GP2 and GP3.

    • Dion (@infinitygc) said on 3rd November 2013, 19:27

      I think you’ve worded it best, so far!

  8. Mike Dee (@mike-dee) said on 3rd November 2013, 17:58

    “You need to leave the space, you always need to leave the space [for Alonso]!”

    • Tifoso1989 (@tifoso1989) said on 3rd November 2013, 18:18

      and for Vettel

      • Eric (@) said on 3rd November 2013, 18:51


        When Alonso complained about it the FIA quickly clarified the rules and punished anyone who broke those rules. Now Alonso breaks them as well and the stewards do nothing and people have the nerve to blame Vergne… Classic double standards.

      • V. Chris (@vasschu) said on 3rd November 2013, 20:31


        I remember Vettel got penalized post race for passing Button and lost his podium place in one of the GP’s 2012 and this affected the championship. Also Alonso had to give place to Sergio in Monaco this season because he cut the chicane. Why suddenly they decided to stop enforcing the rules? This race is not affecting the championship. But if it was affecting the championship it was going to be pretty unfair. If Vettel was the one doing the pass off track, were you going to defend him, telling us all that he did nothing wrong? I don’t think so. Lets not judge the stewards decision by how they effect our favorite driver, lets judge them according the rules and the previous history of enforcing those rules.

  9. Barney said on 3rd November 2013, 18:22

    Grosjean escapes penalty in Hungary also floor penalty. But Raikkonen gets floor penalty!!!!! Why??? The stewards fail more and more with each race!!!! I’m surprised Vergne wasn’t penalised, although he did not deserved it under these circumstances!!!!!! That aside, there are too many penalties, too many rules over how to defend yourself etc. They killed racing anyway.

    PS: As big Ferrari fan as I am, Alonso deserved a penalty this race. Also it was funny seeing how the pit crew made a mistake INTENTIONALLY to slow down Massa! Disappointed.

  10. Patrick (@paeschli) said on 3rd November 2013, 18:26

    FIA = Ferrari International Assistance …

    The penality for Grosjean in Hungary seems completely unfair now …

  11. Eric (@) said on 3rd November 2013, 18:46

    If this had been about Vettel, he would have been crucified.

    And he would have gotten a penalty.

    This is,.. Unbelievable.

    • Slr (@slr) said on 3rd November 2013, 19:13

      Vettel has gotten away with overtaking by exceeding the track limits himself before, he got away with it in Australia in 2011.

      • @slr which was before the supposed clamping down. I don’t necessarily agree that Alonso should have gotten a penalty, but that incident is pretty irrelevant. What would be more relevant is Germany 2012…

        • Slr (@slr) said on 3rd November 2013, 19:57

          @vettel1 Well it hard to say when the clamping down began, in the same race Button was penalised for overtaking off the circuit; Alonso was given penalty for the same reason during the British Grand Prix a year earlier; in Singapore in 2009 Webber passed Alonso off the circuit and had to give the place back.

          Certainly the FIA have been more vocal about this issue recently, but penalising drivers for overtaking via exceeding the track limits is nothing new.

          • @slr
            Button cut the chicane to overtake in that race, as did Alonso in Silverstone. Overtaking by going beyond the while line on exit wasn’t punished as much as it is today.

      • Eric (@) said on 4th November 2013, 1:31


        In a corner where everybody and their Grandmother go off track every single lap.

        If you look at Germany 2012, Vettel was also pushed to the outside by Button but still got a penalty. Or Grosjean on Massa in Hungary, same idea. Now though, it’s suddenly Vergne’s fault although Vergne had absolutely no way of seeing Alonso and it’s Alonso’s responsibility to make sure nothing happens as he exits the pits.

        • Slr (@slr) said on 4th November 2013, 16:45

          If you look at Germany 2012, Vettel was also pushed to the outside by Button but still got a penalty.

          Vettel wasn’t pushed off, he chose to go off; at no point did Button run Vettel wide.

          Yes stewarding is inconsistent, however the only real way to achieve it is by have permanent stewards. Different stewards will view different kinds of incidents differently. It’s possible that had the Abu Dhabi stewards would have not given a penalty to Grosjean had they been stewarding the Hungarian GP.

    • Tifoso1989 (@tifoso1989) said on 4th November 2013, 16:32

      Just for the history
      Vettel escaped penalties in :
      Suzuka 2011 : pushing a driver off the track leaving button with 2 wheels on the track
      Suzuka 2012 : impeding a driver
      I know that all the drivers do make mistakes and it is up to the stewards to made the right decisions but if they didn’t do then it’s not the drivers fault and it’s not a reason to play the victim for your favorite driver

  12. TheBass (@) said on 3rd November 2013, 19:23

    Welcome to F1, where the penalties are a joke and the rules don’t matter.

  13. Palle (@palle) said on 3rd November 2013, 19:24

    So next race, if a driver is faster than the one in front, he just have to build up a situation, where he “is forced to go of track” because he doesn’t lift when he should’ve done it and then cut the corner and overtake – like Sutil did today and got away with it.

  14. PeterG said on 3rd November 2013, 19:28


    “It was a racing incident and if he had not gone on the outside [of the track] like he did, we would have had a big crash,” Vergne told AUTOSPORT.

    “It was high-speed, and what he did was right. Actually, I am really happy he did that otherwise we would have had an accident, so yes, definitely [the stewards made the right decision].”

  15. Sure, Vergne didn’t leave enough room and Alonso was forced to go off the track. It was a daring and impressive overtaking by Alonso as usual. However, should another driver have done the same (say a Grosjean or Hulkenberg), I’m pretty sure he would have being penalized straight away!

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