Stewards hand Ferrari fine over pit lane error

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The race stewards for the Italian Grand Prix at Monza have handed Ferrari a €10,000 fine after the team allowed a driver out on track after the session was over in a somewhat bizarre incident during the first free practice session today.

Towards the end of the session, Fernando Alonso aimed to complete a practice start at the end of the pit lane. The Spaniard was stationary and in position, with teammate Felipe Massa coming down the pit lane in the final few seconds of the session. However, as Massa approached the end of the pit lane, the green light turned red, forbidding drivers from exiting the pits. Despite braking hard and only narrowly missing his teammate, Massa crossed the white line marking the pit exit, thus ‘exiting the pits’ (albeit by a tiny margin), and warranting a fine.

After the session, the stewards release a statement explaining their decision:

“The driver made every attempt to stop when seeing the red light, however the team made an error in releasing the car with insufficient time remaining in the session. No sporting advantage was gained.”

Besides this incident, Ferrari enjoyed a good day at Monza, with Fernando Alonso running strongly in both practice sessions as he bids to win the Italian Grand Prix for a third time this weekend.

IndyCar Grand Prix of Alabama final practice report

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Will Power posted the fastest lap in the third practice session for the Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Ala. with a speed of 122.953 mph.

Rookie Robert Wickens (122.552 mph) was second fast, foretelling a continuation of his incredible rookie season.

Scott Dixon (122.237), Ryan Hunter-Reay (122.231) and Alexander Rossi (122.106) rounded out the top five.

The practice was interrupted several times for incidents. 

Ed Jones spun off track in turn five after locking up his brakes with 30 minutes remaining in practice three. He was able to drive back to the pits under his own power.

With 20 minutes still on the clock, Jordan King took a trip into the fence after posting a fastest lap of 121.753 mph. He sustained substantial left side damage to his car and came back to the pits on the hook.

“I’m annoyed really,” King said afterward on the live stream at IndyCar.com. “I slightly locked the inside front, then just stayed off onto the grass and that was it. But I wasn’t really even pushing that hard.”

With two minutes remaining, Charlie Kimball lost power and pulled off the track, bringing an end to the practice session.

Dixon also had an off-road excursion.