Fernando Alonso has been given the all-clear by doctors after being involved in a frightening crash at the Australian Formula One Grand Prix. The McLaren driver’s car flipped twice and crumbled to pieces before hitting a barrier at turn three of the Albert Park circuit on Sunday.
“I’m happy to be here, it was quite a scary crash,” Alonso told Network Ten. “Lucky to be here,” the Spaniard concluded.
McLaren driver Fernando Alonso of Spain emerges from the wreck of his car after he collided with Haas driver Esteban Gutierrez of Mexico during the Australian Formula One Grand Prix.
McLaren driver Fernando Alonso of Spain emerges from the wreck of his car after he collided with Haas driver Esteban Gutierrez of Mexico during the Australian Formula One Grand Prix. Photograph: Theo Karanikos/AP
Alonso clipped the rear of Esteban Gutierrez of Haas Racing at full speed while trying to pass Gutierrez around the outside on lap 17 of 57. The Spaniard somehow managed to walk away from the mangled wreckage and hoards of debris unharmed. Both he and Gutierrez were taken to the medical centre for assessment. The team later confirmed via Twitter he had been “formally okayed by the doctors”.
“I’m sure his marbles are rattled a little bit,” McLaren chief Ron Dennis told Sky Sports. Stewards will investigate the incident after the race. The accident triggered a red flag, bringing proceedings to a temporary halt before resuming at 4:55pm (AEDT).
Alonso missed the 2015 Australian Grand Prix following a crash during testing in Spain. He joined Gutierrez, Daniil Kvyat (Red Bull), Rio Haryanto (Manor) and Kimi Raikkonen in retiring from the season-opening.
Sunday’s spectacular smash happened at the same corner former driver, now commentator Martin Brundle flipped his Jordan-Peugeot on lap one of the first F1 race at Albert Park in 1996.