The standard press conference prior to the Italian Grand Prix was sure to be rife with Renault race-fix allegations for Fernando Alonso. Alonso fielded several questions and maintained that he was not going to address the allegations against Renault by former employee Nelson Piquet Jnr.
Alonso said that he was unaware of any race-fixing and was surprised by the allegations. He also reiterated that Flavio Briatore is his boss and a good guy in F1. Yet again making many wonder how the Spaniard continues to be teflon coated on article 151c breaches.
“Of course, Flavio has been always a nice boss with me. He’s a friend, he’s a boss. He has supported my career since the times when I was in Minardi. I think Flavio is one of the good people here and he has all my support always.”
While Max Mosley may not be a fan of the Flav, Bernie Ecclestone most certainly is and this tribunal could be placing some serious pressure on the power structure of F1. Mosley has always had a scorched earth approach to governance so any damage this may cause for the future of F1 is probably not of any concern to him at this point. Ecclestone did warn that Renault could pull out of F1 if this is found to be true and it makes one wonder if this wasn’t a firm warning to the FIA.
Two of F1’s biggest scandal have involved teams where Fernando Alonso was driving. Conventional wisdom would say that the guy is very unlucky with the article 151c breaches and other critics claim he is part of the scandals and knew the details. The latter is difficult to understand as he came clean with all he knew regarding McLaren’s industrial espionage case and Piquet as well as Briatore do not mention Alonos’s presence in the no infamous pre-race meeting at Singapore 2008.
There seems to be some telemetry and other related items that would suggest that Piquet did intentionally bin the car but at this point, unless Quest investigation agency or the FIa can provide a document demanding that Piquet intentionally crash, I can’t see how this will go much further. It would take a serious amount of supposition to hang Renault for this crime without refutable evidence. But…who knows? They may just have that evidence.
Fernando Alonso’s comments and some additional perspective can bee seen at Autosports story here.