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Formula 1 Australian GP

Ferrari: Sainz Australian GP penalty review had sufficient new evidence

Ferrari still feels enough new evidence was presented to reverse Carlos Sainz’s Australian Grand Prix penalty, but will work with the FIA to further improve the policing of Formula 1.

Carlos Sainz, Ferrari

The FIA has dismissed the Scuderia petitioning Sainz’s five-second penalty that was awarded in Melbourne for the Spaniard hitting Fernando Alonso at the final standing restart.

With the round heavily disrupted and ultimately finishing with a procession behind the safety car, the reprimand dropped Sainz from fourth at the flag down to a point-less 12th.

Ferrari launched its right of review request on the grounds that the decision was made in-race, rather than allowing the driver to present their defence to the stewards.

It cited a Force India case from 2014 as a precedent for being able to offer a driver witness statement and new telemetry data to get such a punishment overturned.

Sainz’s late braking point ahead of the Turn 1 collision was provided to the FIA, in addition to the driver arguing too cool tyre temperatures from a slow formation lap and low sun impairing visibility had contributed to the crash.

But the FIA threw the case out on the grounds this did not meet the required “significant and relevant new information which was unavailable to the parties seeking the review at the time of the decision concerned”, while also arguing all drivers were faced with the same conditions as Sainz.

Carlos Sainz, Ferrari SF-23

Carlos Sainz, Ferrari SF-23

Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images

Ferrari has issued a statement in response, saying that it was satisfied it had provided enough new information but it was “respectful” of the FIA process and outcome.

The team bulletin read: "We acknowledge the FIA decision not to grant us a right of review in relation to the penalty imposed on Carlos Sainz at the 2023 Australian Grand Prix.

"We are naturally disappointed and felt that we had provided sufficient new elements for the FIA to re-examine the decision especially in the context of the particular conditions and multiple incidents that occurred during the final restart.

"We are however respectful of the process and of the FIA decision."

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Ferrari, who reached a private settlement with the governing body in early 2020 after its engine fuel-flow system was investigated, added: "We are now looking froward to entering broader discussions with the FIA, F1, and all the teams, with the aims of further improving the policing of our sport, in order to ensure the highest level of fairness and consistency that our sport deserves."

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