Sebastian Vettel is one reprimand away from a Formula 1 grid penalty after being punished for missing the national anthem ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix.
The Ferrari driver skipped the pre-race ceremony to remain by his car, as mechanics worked to address the spark plug problem that would put him out of the race.
But as attending the national anthem ceremony is mandatory, Vettel was investigated by the race stewards for a breach of the rules.
An FIA statement confirmed that Vettel has been given a reprimand for his actions.
That decision is significant because, under F1's Sporting Regulations, it means another punishment for a driving offence in a race this year will result in a penalty.
Vettel already has a driving infringement reprimand, after he crossed the pit lane exit line during qualifying at the Monaco Grand Prix.
Article 18.2 of F1's sporting regulations states: "Any driver who receives three reprimands in the same championship season will, upon the imposition of the third, be given a 10 grid place penalty at that event.
"If the third reprimand is imposed following an incident during a race the 10 grid place penalty will be applied at the driver's next event.
"The 10 grid place penalty will only be imposed if at least two of the reprimands were imposed for a driving infringement."
It means that Vettel must avoid getting a reprimand for any driving offence over the remaining four races of the campaign.