Date: 23rd September 2013 at 9:18am
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Mark Webber and Fernando Alonso were handed reprimands following the Singapore Grand Prix.

A reprimand usually represents just a slap across the knuckles, but as it was Mark Webber, this was his third reprimand of the season which means an automatic ten-place grid penalty in Korea for the Australian Red Bull driver.

A ten-place grid penalty is one of the harsher penalties handed out by race stewards, usually for causing an avoidable collision or accident which has affected the race of another driver. But for Webber, the straw that broke the camel’s back was hitching a lift with friend and Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso.

Webber had retired from the race on the final lap after suffering a water leak, which caused the engine to fail and eventually catch on fire, which was all very spectacular under the floodlights of the Singapore night sky.

Alonso then collected Webber on the parade lap after the race, recreating the famous image of Nigel Mansell giving Ayrton Senna a lift back to the pits at Silverstone in 1991.

‘In sport, I think it’s cool, like Nigel and Ayrton and there’s been times where I’ve driven past someone else and wished that I’d stopped,’ Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton said after the race.

The problem appeared to arise in the manner which it was done, with two cars [one being Hamilton], going either side of Alonso as Webber got in the car.

Hamilton continued: ‘I was doing my in-lap and came round the corner and Fernando was there – I was really shocked.

‘If Mark was walking across where I went, I would have run him over. Fortunately, that wasn’t the case.

‘I think it’s good for fans to see but as long as it’s done in a safe manner, where we don’t stop on the racing line, maybe it should be allowed for the future.’

The race stewards concurred and penalised both Alonso and Webber as they deemed the incident was: ‘potentially dangerous to other drivers or any other person. In this case, two cars had to take avoiding action as a result

A reflective Webber said afterwards: ‘It’s annoying but someone’s had a tougher day than me somewhere and that’s the way it goes.’