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GP Week : Issue 56
Renault to appeal race suspe T Stewards claim team “knowingly” let Alonso go with a loose wheel With safety concerns clearly HE Renault F1 Team will appeal its suspension from the up-coming European Grand Prix in Valencia in three weeks’ time, for the sequence of events which led to Fernando Alonso’s wheel coming loose and detaching itself from his R29 following his first pitstop at the Hungarian Grand Prix. Having twice spoken with heightened following F2 racer Henry Surtees’ death after a loose tyre bounced into the path of his car one week ago, the FIA stewards have come down extraordinarily hard on the Renault F1 Team for allegedly “knowingly” allowing Alonso to continue with a loose wheel. Renault representatives, the stewards announced that the team had “knowingly released car no. 7 from the pitstop position without one of the retaining devices for the wheelnuts being securely in position, this being an indication that the wheel itself may not have been properly secured.” They went on to explain that, “being aware of this, [Renault] failed to take any action to prevent the car from leaving the pitlane, failed to inform the driver of this problem or to advise him to take appropriate action given the circumstances, even though the driver contacted the team by radio believing he had a puncture.”