Maldonado Banned for Nine Races

Stewards for the Monaco round of the World Series by Renault have banned Pastor Maldonado for nine races after an incident on Thursday which left a marshal hospitalised and suffering serious back injuries

Maldonado Banned for Nine Races

The incident occured at the top of the hill towards Casino Square: Patrick Pilet spun on his own and was being attended by the marshal when Maldonado arrived, striking both the marshal and Pilet's car.

Comments were made to a number of journalists, including Autosport-Atlas, immediately afterwards by Maldonado and the following driver Meneghello that there were no yellow flags being shown at the accident site.

Series organisers have strenuously denied this, stating that double yellow flags were being waved by a number of marshals, and a variety of sources in other teams have supported this position.

The marshal was taken immediately to hospital, where it was established that he had broken his back in two places. Organisers advised that he will not be paralysed but is expected to need at least a year of physical therapy to regain full strength.

Considering the severity of the incident, organisers had no option but to punish Maldonado, who had already destroyed two cars in testing with his fast but erratic driving style.

Maldonado is a member of the Renault Driver Development (RDD) programme, and the 20 year old, winner of the Italian Formula Renault 2000 title in 2004, also tested for Minardi F1 last November.

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