Race start, Albert Park, 2023

Australian Grand Prix stopped after eight laps as Albon crashes

2023 Australian Grand Prix

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The Australian Grand Prix has been red-flagged just eight laps in the race after Alexander Albon crashed out.

The Williams driver spun off in turn seven and hit a barrier, damaging his car and scattering debris and gravel onto the circuit. He was able to climb out of his car and appears to be uninjured.

The Safety Car was initially dispatched in response to the incident. However the FIA F1 race director Niels Wittich then decided to red flag the race.

An FIA spokesperson confirmed the race was suspended “due to the amount of gravel and debris on the track that needs clearing.”

George Russell had taken the lead of the race but pitted during the initial Safety Car period. Carlos Sainz Jnr also pitted, and the Ferrari driver expressed his frustration on learning the race would be red-flagged, as under F1’s rules all drivers are able to replace their tyres during the suspension.

The race will restart with 50 laps to go and Lewis Hamilton leading ahead of Max Verstappen. Former leader Russell fell to seventh and Sainz is 11th.

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2023 Australian Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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6 comments on “Australian Grand Prix stopped after eight laps as Albon crashes”

  1. Can we have another restart please please please. Not because of racing but for the show, you know…

    1. ok. Are you Satisfied now?

  2. In over 40 years of watching F1, I don’t think I have ever seen a Red Flag for gravel.

    Having the 2 red flags this race have been nothing more than farcical!

    1. I agree. Plus they’re dangerous – every time you restart you gamble with people’s races, cars and safety. They shouldn’t be used like confetti for extra excitement.

    2. I also remember that cars were recovered from gravel under yellow flags in no time. These days it happens so quickly that I start to think that marshals firstly hold a vote who will go, then race director holds another vote – vsc, sc, or red flag. Then RD decides and gives results back to the marshals who vote again who will do it.

  3. What an embarrassment. Make a decision and apply it. People will be upset either way.

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