FIA explains Ricard start penalty after Romain Grosjean complaints

The FIA has moved to explain why Romain Grosjean was penalised during last week's French Grand Prix after the Haas driver's criticism of the decision on Thursday

FIA explains Ricard start penalty after Romain Grosjean complaints

Grosjean said it was "absolutely nonsense" that he was handed a five-second time penalty for a clash with Esteban Ocon on the run from the startline to Turn 1 at Paul Ricard.

In response to Grosjean's comments, FIA race director Charlie Whiting met with select media in the Red Bull Ring drivers' briefing room after practice for this weekend's Austrian GP.

Using footage of the start from the overhead helicopter camera and Ocon's onboard shown on a large screen, Whiting talked through the incident to clarify why the punishment was handed out.

He said the stewards did not take issue with Grosjean's initial move to the left, even though it squeezed Ocon so the Force India had two wheels beyond the white line on the run-off.

Whiting explained that Grosjean's second move to the left, which initiated contact, made it "fairly clear he just bumped into him".

"That's why the stewards penalised him," Whiting said "He'd moved him over, two of his [Ocon's] wheels were off the track anyway, and then he [Grosjean] just gave him a final little help on his way."

Whiting said he wanted to "make it clear that there is more to it than Romain may have thought".

The FIA has pushed for greater transparency in its decision-making processes by making key figures available to the media as well as showing drivers as much material as possible.

If a driver is called to the stewards over an incident post-race they are shown onboard footage used by the stewards to make their decision, but as Grosjean's was an in-race penalty he was not presented with the evidence.

Whiting said: "Romain's made his position clear to you guys without discussing it with us.

"I'd like to point out he didn't come to us after the race to have a chat about it either.

"It would have been good if he'd come to us after the race and said 'Look, I really feel I was harshly dealt with there and could you tell me why?' and we would have shown him footage."

Grosjean claimed he was being pushed to the left by Charles Leclerc, but the footage shows there is clear distance between the Sauber and the Haas.

Whiting reviewed the overhead footage again after Autosport raised Grosjean's argument.

When Autosport suggested that Grosjean's move to the left appeared an odd and delayed reaction, Whiting replied: "It does. I tend to agree with you there."

Autosport understands the incident was not raised in the drivers' briefing, which followed Whiting's meeting with the media, and therefore the footage was not shown.

Whiting had already indicated that the usual protocol left it down to the drivers to raise issues from the previous race.

shares
comments
Austrian GP unsafe release reaction validates Haas F1's pit tweaks
Previous article

Austrian GP unsafe release reaction validates Haas F1's pit tweaks

Next article

Mercedes F1 car upgrade improved stability, say Bottas and Hamilton

Mercedes F1 car upgrade improved stability, say Bottas and Hamilton
Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team Plus

Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team

On Tuesday, Red Bull laid out its plans to develop and build a new hypercar - the RB17 - penned by Adrian Newey. As the project itself sates Newey as a creative outlet, it also offers Red Bull's Formula 1 team a number of new and exciting avenues to pursue

What to expect from Mercedes as F1 returns to Silverstone Plus

What to expect from Mercedes as F1 returns to Silverstone

OPINION: The British Grand Prix is a home event for Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, with their Mercedes team based just a few miles away too. But there’s another reason why the Silver Arrows squad is eager to arrive at Silverstone this weekend, which may help it fix its remaining problems with its 2022 Formula 1 challenger

The “solemn promise” that cost quiet hero Brooks an F1 title Plus

The “solemn promise” that cost quiet hero Brooks an F1 title

After two terrifying crashes, one of the best British racers of the 1950s retired before his career peaked. But that’s why GP Racing’s MAURICE HAMILTON was able to speak to Tony Brooks in 2014. Like his friend Stirling Moss, Brooks was regarded as one of the best drivers never to have won the world championship. Here, as our tribute to Brooks who died last month, is that interview in full

Formula 1
Jun 27, 2022
Inside the Faenza facility where AlphaTauri’s F1 pragmatic vision is realised Plus

Inside the Faenza facility where AlphaTauri’s F1 pragmatic vision is realised

AlphaTauri’s mission in F1 is to sell clothes and train young drivers rather than win the championship – but you still need a cutting-edge factory to do that. Team boss Franz Tost takes GP Racing’s OLEG KARPOV on a guided tour of a facility that’s continuing to grow

Formula 1
Jun 26, 2022
Connecting two of Ferrari's favourite F1 sons Plus

Connecting two of Ferrari's favourite F1 sons

Gilles Villeneuve's exploits behind the wheel of a Ferrari made him a legend to the tifosi, even 40 years after his death. The team's current Formula 1 star Charles Leclerc enjoys a similar status, and recently got behind the wheel of a very special car from the French-Canadian’s career

Formula 1
Jun 24, 2022
How a 30cm metal wire triggered open warfare in the F1 paddock Plus

How a 30cm metal wire triggered open warfare in the F1 paddock

Porpoising has become the key talking point during the 2022 Formula 1 season, as teams battle to come to terms with it. An FIA technical directive ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix and a second stay appearing on the Mercedes cars only served to create a bigger debate and raise tensions further

Formula 1
Jun 23, 2022
Does Verstappen have any weaknesses left? Plus

Does Verstappen have any weaknesses left?

Having extended his Formula 1 points lead with victory in Canada, Max Verstappen has raised his game further following his 2021 title triumph. Even on the days where Red Bull appears to be second best to Ferrari, Verstappen is getting the most out of the car in each race. So, does he have any weaknesses that his title rivals can exploit?

Formula 1
Jun 22, 2022
How F1's future fuels can shape the automotive sector Plus

How F1's future fuels can shape the automotive sector

In 2026, Formula 1 plans to make the switch to a fully sustainable fuel, as the greater automotive world considers its own alternative propulsion methods. Biogasoline and e-fuels both have merit as 'drop-in' fuels but, equally, both have their shortcomings...

Formula 1
Jun 21, 2022