Fernando Alonso has confirmed that he suffered a fractured rib in his Australian Grand Prix crash that prompted the FIA doctors in Bahrain to rule him out of this weekend’s race.
Alonso crashed out at 200 mph in Melbourne after running over the back of Esteban Gutierrez’s Haas car, but walked away from the shunt unscathed.
After undergoing a medical check in Bahrain with the FIA doctors, it was confirmed on Thursday that Alonso had been declared unfit to race this weekend.
“Last week [in Australia] I was OK Sunday, some knee pain but not big things. I had the green light to leave the track and everything was OK,” Alonso said.
“On Monday I had a bit of overall pain, nothing too serious. Then I flew back, arrived in Spain and the pain was a little more, so we did a proper check and I had a small pneumothorax [collapse] on the lung.
“We took advice from the doctors to relax at home and repeat the scan last Monday. The pneumothorax is gone more or less but I had some rib fractures. And because F1 is a very unique position in the car, and with the g-forces, there was a risk the fractures could move into the lung.
“It’s not like broken leg or arm where you can deal with the pain; it’s the chest where there are organs, so we cannot do much more.”
Alonso conceded that he is not sure whether he will be fit to race in the Chinese Grand Prix in two weeks’ time due to the injury.
“It is not 100 per cent. It will be another test I need to do in the next eight or 10 days and after that the FIA will evaluate again, as they did today,” Alonso said.
“I will recover. I am already recovered from the pneumothorax, it’s just the ribs are not ‘glued’ let’s say, so it could be a problem.
“It is a very, very small risk, but I understand we all want zero risk. So it is just a matter of time. In the next 10 days it should be fine but we cannot guarantee – maybe five days, maybe 10, maybe 12.”
Alonso’s place at McLaren will be taken by team reserve driver Stoffel Vandoorne this weekend.