Fernando Alonso received a five-second penalty for being out of position at the start of the race, similar to his former teammate, Esteban Ocon, who was also penalized at the Bahrain GP. During Alonso‘s only pit stop, the FIA stewards investigated him for not serving his time penalty correctly. The stewards concluded that one of Alonso‘s mechanics was touching the car before the five-second penalty window ended. After initially heading to the podium to take the trophy for his third-place finish, which would have been his 100th in F1, Alonso was hit with an additional 10-second penalty. This penalty ultimately demoted him to fourth place, behind George Russell.
In response to his first five-second penalty, which was due to being out of position at the start, Alonso admitted to not yet comprehending how he made the mistake. He stated, “I need to review obviously; I made a mistake.” He initially believed that he could make up the penalty by driving a bit faster, but he later received news of his second penalty.
During the race’s final laps, Alonso found himself under pressure from Russell. Russell’s Mercedes team expected Alonso to receive another penalty, and their gap was hovering around five seconds. Alonso revealed that he had to put in “qualifying laps” to attempt to secure third place.
Though Alonso missed out on his 100th podium finish, after being demoted to fourth place due to the penalties, Aston Martin confirmed their impressive performance at the beginning of the season. They kept both Mercedes and Ferrari at bay on the track. Aston Martin heads to the Australian Grand Prix ranked third in the constructors’ standings, only six points behind Mercedes and nine points ahead of Ferrari.