McLaren angry with FIA over Alonso injuries?
Honda F1 website
Honda website

APRIL 2, 2016

McLaren angry with FIA over Alonso injuries?

Ron Dennis is reportedly angry with F1's governing body for not detecting the injuries that have sidelined Fernando Alonso in Bahrain.

Just after his enormous Melbourne crash, the Spaniard was given a clean bill of health to take the long haul flight from Australia and commence his preparations for Bahrain.

But Alonso said that when he arrived home in Spain, "The pain was similar or a little bit more, so we decided to do a proper check -- a CT scan."

According to Spanish newspapers, Alonso was urged to get the checks done by his sister Lorena, who is a doctor.

The scan found not only rib fractures but also a small pneumothorax, or partially-collapsed lung.

He reportedly took those scans and a follow-up scan with him to Bahrain, where the FIA ruled out him out of contention for Bahrain and possibly also China.

Diario Sport, as well as other specialist Spanish publications, say the episode his angered the McLaren camp.

Dennis, the team supremo, met with Bernie Ecclestone and FIA doctor Jean-Charles Piette in Bahrain late on Friday, where a bid was made to reinstate Alonso for the race weekend even though Stoffel Vandoorne did the driving in practice.

"He (Alonso) has slept well and asked doctors to look at the possibility that he can resume physical activity," the Spanish broadcaster Movistar declared.

The FIA turned down Alonso and McLaren's request, but the reports say there are concerns the FIA should have been more thorough in its examinations of the 34-year-old driver.

Adding to Alonso's pain is that McLaren-Honda looks surprisingly competitive in Bahrain, with Jenson Button declaring Friday was "our best day in two years" after going third quickest in practice.

"They seem to be very quick," agrees Renault driver Jolyon Palmer.

Toro Rosso's Max Verstappen agrees: "I saw Jenson when he was on a fast lap and I can say that the McLaren is very good in the first sector. It is obvious that they have made progress."

And Daniel Ricciardo, of Red Bull, added: "Even if he was on 5 kilos of fuel, it was still a pretty decent laptime."

Another surprise was the seemingly big gap between Mercedes and Ferrari on Friday, with Sebastian Vettel's troubles compounded by a practice stoppage.

"I thought we'd be closer here," the German admitted to Brazil's Globo.

Teammate Kimi Raikkonen, however, is not giving up hope.

"You guys (the media) always look at laptimes, but we did our programme and everything worked. The times are one thing but what really matters is what happens tomorrow (Saturday)."

(GMM)

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