Russell: Alonso investigation into heavy crash ‘bizarre’


George Russell has refused to accuse Fernando Alonso of brake testing him to cause a late crash at the Australian Grand Prix but believes a trip to the stewards for such an incident is “bizarre”.

The Mercedes driver was hounding two-time world champion Alonso for sixth place on the penultimate lap of the race at Albert Park when, entering Turn six, Russell slid wide and hit the barriers, almost flipping as his car spun back onto the racetrack.

Despite the innocuous-looking nature of the crash, Alonso was summoned to the stewards to review the incident and speaking to Sky Sports F1, Russell explained: “My take is that I’ve gone off and that’s on me.

“I was half a second behind Fernando 100m before the corner and then suddenly, he came towards me extremely quickly.

“I don’t know if he had a problem or not but we are off to the stewards and that’s a bit bizarre in a circumstance like this.”

‘I’m not going to accuse him’

It is understood that Mercedes is suggesting Russell was brake-checked by Aston Martin’s Alonso, which in turn forced him across the gravel.

Asked if he believed he was brake-tested, the Briton replied: “It is clear that he braked 100m before the corner and then went back on the throttle again and took the corner normally, we’ve already seen the data of that.

“So I’m not going to accuse him of anything until we’ve seen further.

“I was right behind him for many laps, half a second behind approaching the corner and then suddenly he slowed up dramatically and got back on the power.

“I wasn’t expecting it and it caught me by surprise, so that part is on me but it’s interesting that we’ve been called to the stewards.”

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