CONCUSSED AND RECOVERING: McLaren driver Fernando Alonso will miss the first race of his new job in Melbourne on Sunday. Image: McLaren
MELBOURNE, Australia -McLaren Formula 1 boss Ron Dennis has admitted bungling the Fernando Alonso saga, finally now joining those who agree the Barcelona test crash is a "mystery".
Since the Spaniard hit the wall on February 22, McLaren has claimed it was a "normal" incident and a mere concussion for the team's new star driver but Dennis insisted in a recent media conference that Alonso was in fact not even concussed, attracting wide condemnation from fans and the media.
Now he has said in Australia: "Putting aside the fact my lack of medical expertise, concussion was an automatic result of unconsciousness in the accident, (it) set me up as I often do, for massive amounts of criticism for being inaccurate.
"This is life. I have to take it. I understand why the media beat me up. I wanted to be open and honest. I failed but it is my objective to try to be as honest as possible in future."
He now concedes that Alonso had to sit out the Melbourne F1 GP due to the 21-day waiting period after being concussed but, curiously, did not confirm that the 33-year-old would definitely be back in action in Malaysia.
That will be five weeks post-crash.
"As far as I know Fernando will be in Malaysia," he said. "I hope so but it is his decision, not mine."
BRIATORE WANTS ANSWERS
Alonso's race engineer Andrea Stella, who has also switched from Ferrari, is in Melbourne to work on the car to be raced by his replacement, Kevin Magnussen.
The Internatioinal Automobile Federation is investigating the crash and the Spanish driver's manager Flavio Briatore has also called on McLaren to clarify what happened.
Dennis added: "Whether the mystery will materialise in hard fact remains to be seen."
Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo said today (March 12 2015) that he had "no concerns" about his safety amid the but it was Magnussen and Jenson Button who would be driving the troubled MP4-30 in Melbourne.
Button was quoted by Melbourne's The Age newspaper as saying: "There's no data to show that there was any issue whatsoever with the car."
Stay with Wheels24 for the 2015 F1 season – fresh reports every day.