Fuming Alonso says F1 is no longer a sport
10 September 2006 – A furious Fernando Alonso proclaimed that Formula One is no longer a sport after Italian Grand Prix stewards ruled he had blocked Felipe Massa in Saturday qualifying and relegated him five place on the starting grid.
Renault called reporters to its motorhome to see video evidence themselves of the alleged 'blocking' and speak to Alonso. The video shown suggested Massa never got to within 100 metres of Alonso.
"If that's blocking then we'll have a lot of problems from now on in qualifying," fumed Alonso. "If that's blocking also, I don't understand how we'll race today if that's the minium distance allowed between cars."
"I love the sport, love the fans coming here - a lot of them from Spain but I don't consider Formula One like a sport any more," he went on.
Renault team boss Flavio Briatore also waded in insisting, "Fernando never intentionally wanted to stop Massa. It was quite dangerous for us to send Fernando out again after his puncture, but we're fighting for the championship and people need to see a show."
"He made the chequered flag for his final flying lap by one second," Briatore continued. "We told him on the radio that he had to drive a hard out-lap - make it like a qualifying lap."