Max Verstappen engine penalty explained as Red Bull’s final start in Russia
Jack NicoleSeptember 24, 2021
Photo by Rudy Karezevoli/Getty Images
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen will be penalised for using the new Formula 1 engine. Why was Verstappen penalised at the Russian Grand Prix?
Max Verstappen engine penalty explained
Red Bull has known for some time that front-runner Verstappen will receive a stop penalty for the new engine.
F1 rules state that drivers can use three engines in a season under Article 23.2b of the Sporting Regulations.
To control costs and improve reliability, engine restrictions have been implemented for many years.
If drivers use more than three engines, they will be sent to the rear of the Grand Prix.
Red Bull and Verstappen were unable to fit a second new engine in his pool, increasing his number to five.
Teams used to do this in the early days of the turbo-hybrid era, but the FIA was quick to ban it.
Only units used in the match are allowed to advance.
Verstappen should have been penalized in Sochi.
After the Italian Grand Prix, he was hit with three points as stewards believed he was “mainly” responsible for the collision with Lewis Hamilton.
Why did Verstappen need a new engine?
Verstappen lost one of his three units in his heavy-duty Silverstone split after coming into contact with Mercedes’ Hamilton.
On the first lap, the pair battled each other around the corner of Copse.
Hamilton jumped to the inside but clipped Verstappen’s right back.
Verstappen hit the barrier, recording a 51-gram impact.
Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images
Since then, Red Bull has been considering when to bring in a new unit.
It has a history of working with Verstappen in Sochi.
In 2018, he started 19th.
The Dutchman went on to finish fifth behind teammate Daniel Ricciardo.
Has anyone else been penalized by engine qualifying this season?
Verstappen’s teammate Sergio Perez finished fourth at the Dutch Grand Prix.
Perez lost a unit after being knocked down by Valtteri Bottas on the first lap of the Hungarian Grand Prix.
After a poor qualifying session at Zandvoort, Perez accepted a new unit before taking points.
Bottas himself also won a fourth unit last time at the Italian Grand Prix.
The Finn was fastest in qualifying and won the F1 sprint race, but he started last after Mercedes introduced the new unit to his pool.
Photo by Peter Fox/Getty Images
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Jack usually writes or reads anything related to motorsport – from Formula 1 to NASCAR to British truck racing. His work as a motorsport reporter has been published in prestigious media such as Autosport, Motorsport.com and Motorsport News. In addition to racing, he is an avid amateur astronomer, podcast listener, and enjoys walks in the park with his three dogs.
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