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Date set for Renault appeal 30 Jul 2009

Drama for Alonso as a the front-right wheel of his car works loose and falls off following the stop The Renault crawls back to the pits on three wheels, and he eventually retires

A date has been set for the FIA International Court of Appeal hearing into Renault’s suspension from the European Grand Prix. It will take place in Paris on August 17, the Monday before the Valencia race, with a verdict expected the following day.

Renault were handed the punishment at last weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix. The team were found at fault for allowing driver Fernando Alonso to leave the pits with a wheel that hadn’t been properly secured. When Alonso returned to the track, the front-right wheel eventually worked its way loose.

Budapest stewards said they believed Renault had knowingly released Alonso without one of the retaining devices for the wheel-nuts being securely in position; that being aware of this, the team had failed to take any action to prevent the car from leaving the pit lane; and that they had then failed to inform the driver of this problem or to advise him to take appropriate action given the circumstances.

If the team’s appeal fails, both the Spaniard and team mate Nelson Piquet will be forced to sit out the European meeting, which will take place on August 21-23.