Fernando Alonso loses 100th F1 podium due to post-race penalty
Nate SaundersGeneral Editor, F12 minutes read
Fernando Alonso was stripped of his 100th Formula One podium following a post-race penalty at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.
The decision propelled George Russell to third place and gave Mercedes their first podium finish of the year.
Alonso had served a five-second penalty before his first pit stop, a penalty for lining up outside his starting box at the start.
In the closing stages, Mercedes informed the pursuing Russell that Alonso might face a penalty as suspicions grew that the Aston Martin pit crew had touched the car before stopping for five seconds.
Alonso still finished third and celebrated on the podium.
Shortly after receiving his trophy, the Stewards’ investigation was upheld, followed shortly thereafter by the 10-second penalty that propelled Russell to third place.
Lewis Hamilton finished the race 10.3s behind Alonso, meaning the Aston Martin driver narrowly avoided dropping two positions.
The decision is consistent with the penalty Esteban Ocon received for improperly serving a penalty during the Bahrain Grand Prix.
The penalty cost Aston Martin a chance to secure their first consecutive F1 podiums, while Alonso also finished third in Bahrain.
The Red Bull duo swapped positions from that opening race, with Sergio Perez beating teammate Max Verstappen, who had started 15th, to victory.