Stroll hit with gearbox change grid penalty into Australian GP

Lance Stroll will take a five-place grid penalty into Australian Grand Prix qualifying, with his Williams F1 car requiring a gearbox change as a result of his third practice crash

Stroll hit with gearbox change grid penalty into Australian GP

The Canadian swiped his right rear wheel into the barriers on the exit of Turn 10 in the closing minutes of practice - which then pitched his Williams into the wall.

Initial investigations by the team confirmed damage had been sustained to the front wing and front suspension of Stroll's FW40, as well as its gearbox.

Williams confirmed that a replacement gearbox was being fitted ahead of qualifying in a bid to help get the rookie back into action.

Under F1's sporting regulations, drivers are supposed to use gearboxes for six consecutive events.

Although the first grand prix of the season has not taken place yet, the rules state that an event comprises final practice, qualifying and the race - so a change at this point falls foul of those regulations.

The rules state: "Should a driver use a replacement gearbox he will drop five places on the starting grid at that Event and an additional five places each time a further gearbox is used. Any replacement gearbox will only be required to complete the remainder of the Event in question."

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