Alfa had 'discussion' with Giovinazzi over Turkey team orders


Alfa Romeo Racing chief Frédéric Vasseur says the team cleared the air with Antonio Giovinazzi in the wake of the Italian driver defying a team order in the Turkish Grand Prix.

Giovinazzi, who is fighting to retain his seat with Alfa for 2022, was running just outside the points in the closing stages of the race at Istanbul Park when he was asked to swap positions with his faster teammate, Kimi Raikkonen.

But the Italian ignored the call from the Alfa pitwall, which led to Giovinazzi and Raikkonen crossing the chequered flag P11 and P12.

Immediately after the race, Alfa's head of trackside engineering, Xevi Pujolar, said that Giovinazzi's attitude had not been "ideal" for the Swiss outfit.

In Austin, Vasseur said that the team had held a frank discussion with its driver who had been too conservative according to the Frenchman.

"At one stage Kimi pushed more, and we thought that we were able to keep the tyres, and we asked Antonio either to push or to let him go," Vasseur said.

"He was probably too conservative, but I don’t want to blame him. But we had the discussion.

"He was a bit lost with the quantity of the attack he had to do, that for sure he could be much faster. And he was too conservative.

"We lost the points, clearly, but I don’t want to blame Antonio that we had the discussion.

"I think he was sticking to the plan and when we had the window to push more, he took two or three laps to understand that he could push more. It is like it is."

Ahead of this weekend's US Grand prix, amid speculation about a takeover of the Alfa team by Andretti Autosport, Vasseur reiterated that he was in "no rush" to nominate the driver who will be racing alongside Valtteri Bottas next season.

"We have a couple of options and we will take a decision soon," he said.

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