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Alonso gets the win without the applause

Last updated on: July 26, 2010 11:33 IST

Alonso grilled by media after win



Fernando Alonso got the win that he wanted in Sunday's German Grand Prix while his Ferrari Formula One team paid the price with a fine of $100,000.

Race stewards imposed the penalty for using banned 'team orders' to enable the double world champion to get past leading Brazilian teammate Felipe Massa and bring home a one-two at Hockenheim.

Ferrari, who said they had left the decision to Massa after his race engineer sent him a radio message to point out that Alonso was faster, ruled out an appeal.

The cost for Alonso, whose post-race demeanour was only a little more animated than when he had finished 14th at the previous British Grand Prix, was a hostile grilling at the subsequent news conference.

The Spaniard was asked whether he felt embarrassed by the victory, whether he agreed that Ferrari should be kicked out of the race and whether it was a 'dirty' win that could make him a 'dirty champion'.

"We are professional drivers, we try to work in a team and we try to do the best we can every day, not only here on the track but also between the races, at the factory, preparing the races," he said in response to a reminder that he had once complained Formula One was no longer a sport.

Image: Fernando Alonso
Photographs: Reuters

'We've been doing a good job over the last couple of races'

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"I think we've been doing a good job over the last couple of races and finally we got a strong Sunday with a strong result. I think we are happy with this, although there are things which are more for you if you want to write all these things."

The Spaniard was also asked whether the win ranked alongside Singapore 2008, where he triumphed after Brazilian teammate Nelson Piquet deliberately crashed to help him in a scandal that led to Renault collecting a suspended permanent ban.

As the questions, mostly from British reporters, continued, Alonso's answers grew shorter.

"Fernando, do you feel that some people are worrying because you are back in the championship?" asked a more supportive Spanish journalist.

"Maybe it seems like this, yes," replied the double world champion, now fifth in the championship and 34 points behind leader Lewis Hamilton - the Briton who was once his teammate in a difficult pairing at McLaren.

Image: Fernando Alonso

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'What happened today that has happened before'

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Massa, marking the first anniversary of the Hungarian Grand Prix crash that left him in a coma for days, denied that he was now a number two driver.

He said he felt he had deserved the victory but blamed the hard tyres for his predicament and said he had made the decision to let Alonso through with 20 laps remaining.

"I cannot say that I'm there fighting for first position in the championship," he said.

"I've lost many points, important points, and the only thing I can say is that I know what I can do, I can win races, that's what counts and everybody saw today that I can win races and I can be competitive.

"What happened today is something that has happened in many races this year: when I put on the hard tyres I struggle. This is exactly what happened in the race."

Ferrari boss Stefano Domenicali said no explicit orders had been given but the team wanted to avoid a scenario like the one in Turkey where the two Red Bull drivers collided while fighting for the lead.

Alonso had been faster in practice and qualifying and had been chafing to get past, with Massa at times less than a second ahead of him and never more than 3.5 clear.

"As a team interest I want to avoid any difficult situations that arise. We have seen not many grands prix ago what has happened to some others, so we would like to avoid that," Domenicali said.

Image: Fernando Alonso (left) and Felipe Massa on the podium after the German GP on Sunday

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