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Stewards to use time penalties to punish unsafe releases

  • Published on 02 Aug 2019 09:27
  • comments 7
  • By: Fergal Walsh

The stewards will use time penalties to punish a team that releases a driver unsafely into the pit lane after completing the pit stop.

The clarity comes less than a week after Ferrari received a €5,000 fine for unsafely releasing Charles Leclerc into the pit lane, with the Monegasque driver making light contact with Romain Grosjean.

Grosjean was forced to slow down to an almost complete stop while cars queued up behind him in a bust pit lane.

The punishment drew complaints from some, including Red Bull's Max Verstappen, who stated that the punishment was "completely wrong".

At the Monaco Grand Prix earlier this year, Verstappen received a five-second time penalty after making contact in the pit lane with Valtteri Bottas, after being serviced by his Red Bull pit crew. 

"It's completely wrong of course, everybody would do that if you get a fine," Verstappen said of the fine penalty.

"I think it's not fair, and to say that they gave me that penalty purely because we touch is also not fair. You're still releasing a car knowing there is a car in the fast lane.

"They have spoken in the managers meeting about it. Let's see what they're going to do from now on but I think they also saw it wasn't the right way to go." 

Upon hearing that the fine imposed for Ferrari at Germany was €5,000, Verstappen described it as "peanuts" for the team. 

Replies (7)

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  • This is weird. The FIA are turning down money.

    • + 0
    • Aug 2 2019 - 11:30
  • Changes like this should be made at the start of a season. Otherwise there is no consistency. If they had punished Max in Monaco the same way, he would have been second. Leclerc got lucky but it hasn’t helped him

    • + 0
    • Aug 2 2019 - 11:41
    • Manto02

      Posts: 43

      FIA Is never consistent, at least this time there was no consistency but for a right thing. It didn't last unfortunately

      • + 1
      • Aug 2 2019 - 14:58
  • Come on, that's so lame! Unsafe releases are not driver errors, and should be treated thereafter. Punish the teams, not the drivers.

    • + 1
    • Aug 2 2019 - 13:31
    • f1dave

      Posts: 720

      As I've said repeatedly, take points from constructors championship.

      • + 0
      • Aug 2 2019 - 20:45
  • Manto02

    Posts: 43

    They finally did one thing right for unsafe release, since the driver has no fault in a situation like that, but hey, something working? Let's put it into the trash can

    • + 0
    • Aug 2 2019 - 14:58
    • Oh yes, you know how the saying goes: fix what isn't broken. That is absolutely how the saying goes.

      • + 0
      • Aug 2 2019 - 15:48

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