Fernando Alonso will not compete at the Australian Grand Prix on the recommendation of doctors as he continues to recover from his testing crash in Barcelona.
Alonso spent three nights in hospital after being knocked unconscious during the second test and sat out the final four days in Barcelona on medical advice. McLaren said last week the Spaniard had yet to be cleared for the race but remained confident he would be.
On Tuesday McLaren confirmed tests had found “no evidence whatsoever of any injury” but that doctors had recommended the Spaniard sit out the opening round of 2015 to minimise the chances of second impact syndrome. The statement said doctors had conducted “an exhaustive series of tests” which found him entirely healthy from a neurological and cardiac perspective.
The statement went on to say: “Fernando’s doctors have recommended to him that, following the concussion he sustained in a testing accident at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on February 22nd, for the time being he should seek to limit as far as is possible any environmental risk factors that could potentially result in his sustaining another concussion so soon after his previous one, so as to minimise the chances of second impact syndrome, as is normal medical procedure when treating athletes after concussions.
“In order to limit those environmental risk factors, specifically, his doctors have advised that he should not compete in the imminent Australian Grand Prix meeting, which will take place on March 13th, 14th and 15th.”
Reserve driver Kevin Magnussen, the man Alonso replaced last December, will replace the Spaniard for the season opener. McLaren says doctors are supportive of Alonso’s ambitions of returning to the car for the second race in Malaysia.