Formula Renault 3.5 championship leader Carlos Sainz Jr has been handed a two-place grid penalty for the Monaco Grand Prix support race for impeding another car during qualifying
Race stewards deemed that Sainz had held up fellow Red Bull junior Pierre Gasly in the twisty section before the tunnel, so he has been moved from second on the grid to fourth.
Sainz argued that he had slowed because he was shown a yellow flag at Massenet following Roman Mavlanov hitting the wall, and he had maintained a reduced speed because white flags were indicating that there was a slow vehicle (the recovering Mavlanov) ahead.
However, the yellow flags had been removed by the time Gasly arrived at Massenet around six seconds later, so he had not been forced to abandon his lap.
"When you see a yellow flag in Monaco you don't know what is around the next corner," Sainz told AUTOSPORT.
"There could be a guy stopped there, so I really slowed down and I looked ahead to see what was going on.
"Only one car can get around those corners, and when I saw the white flags I decided to be safe and I caught him [Mavlanov] in the tunnel.
"I might have been cautious, but for three days we have been told in briefings to slow down and be prepared to stop in those situations.
"I'm penalised two grid positions, the penalty is like that and I just have to take it."
Revised grid positions: Pos Driver Team Time 1. Norman Nato DAMS 1m23.209s Group B 2. Jazeman Jaafar ISR 1m23.301s Group B 3. Marco Sorensen Tech 1 1m24.262s Group A 4. Carlos Sainz DAMS 1m23.873s Group A 5. Oliver Rowland Fortec 1m23.666s Group B 6. Sergey Sirotkin Fortec 1m24.675s Group A 7. Zoel Amberg AVF 1m23.702s Group B 8. Pierre Gasly Arden 1m24.828s Group A 9. Will Stevens Strakka 1m23.924s Group B 10. Roberto Merhi Zeta 1m24.925s Group A 11. Pietro Fantin Draco 1m23.944s Group B 12. Meindert van Buuren Pons 1m25.107s Group A 13. Marlon Stockinger Lotus 1m24.328s Group B 14. Roman Mavlanov Zeta 1m25.714s Group A 15. William Buller Arden 1m24.365s Group B 16. Matias Laine Strakka 1m25.834s Group A 17. Oliver Webb Pons 1m24.776s Group B 18. Matthieu Vaxiviere Lotus 1m26.072s Group A 19. Beitske Visser AVF 1m25.469s Group B 20. Luca Ghiotto Draco 1m26.153s Group A 21. Andrea Roda Comtec 1m29.698s Group A
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