Montoya Changes Engine without Penalty

McLaren changed the engine in Juan Pablo Montoya's car on Friday but the Colombian escaped a 10-place penalty on the Belgian Grand Prix starting grid

Montoya Changes Engine without Penalty

Montoya, winner of the previous race in Italy last weekend, had been due to start with a new engine in Spa but did not run in Friday's first practice session.

The Mercedes-powered team said they had changed the new engine initially installed in the car with another as a precaution.

Under Formula One rules, engines must last for two races and any unscheduled changes incur a 10-place penalty for the driver concerned on the grid.

That sanction did not apply to Montoya because the problem was detected before he had gone out on to the track.

Teammate Kimi Raikkonen has paid a heavy price for engine failures this season, most recently at Monza where he qualified fastest but started 11th because his car's engine was changed after final practice.

The Finn is the only man who can still prevent Renault's Fernando Alonso from winning the title. The Spaniard has a 27-point lead and will become Formula One's youngest champion if he scores four points more than Raikkonen on Sunday.

McLaren are more likely to win the Constructors' Championship, lagging Renault by eight points with four races remaining. The team have won the last three Grands Prix and Raikkonen triumphed at Spa in 2004.

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