Zandvoort European F3: Dennis punished, Leclerc cleared to race

Formula 3 European Championship title contender Jake Dennis has been given a suspended grid penalty after a bizarre incident in the first race at Zandvoort

Zandvoort European F3: Dennis punished, Leclerc cleared to race

Dennis, who had clutch problems, crept forward before the lights went out. Although he dropped from fourth to sixth at the start proper, he was given a drive-through penalty for the offence.

Before taking the penalty the Briton slowed in the last two corners, causing a chain reaction that resulted in Santino Ferrucci, who was running eighth, damaging his front wing by hitting seventh-placed George Russell.

As a result, Dennis has been given a "drop of 10 positions on the grid suspended for the next two races the driver will participate" for "driving unnecessarily slowly".

An angry Ferrucci, who was forced to pit for a new wing, said: "Out of the chicane I had a four-car gap to Russell, and Jake was five more lengths in front.

"Into the next turn everyone stopped - it's a fourth-gear turn. Then we started to go again, and as we went through the last turn he braked again.

"George just missed him but I couldn't avoid him and I broke my front wing - it was really rude and unrespectful from Jake."

Dennis said: "There was some slight confusion with the radio message, and I went through the last corner not at 100 per cent.

"It caused some confusion behind, but I was driving around doing my own thing."

LECLERC CLEARED TO RACE

Meanwhile, championship leader Charles Leclerc has been cleared to race in Sunday's weekend finale.

Leclerc crashed his Van Amersfoort Racing car in the 140mph Scheivlak bend due to right-rear suspension failure caused in a startline collision in race two, raising fears of monocoque damage.

Scrutineers cleared the car on Saturday evening, allowing Leclerc to take up 10th place on the grid.

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