Heidfeld's Penalty - A Question

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
Nick Heidfeld has been moved 3 places down the grid for tomorrow's Chinese Grand Prix for blocking David Coulthard during Qualification 1, a move that Coulthard was apparently not happy with!

Is the grid penalty for blocking a 5 place drop or does it depend on how much the block affected the blockee?
 

Brogan

🦶 Leg end
Staff member
I was expecting a penalty after seeing the Qualifying this morning.
Not saying it was justified but the stewards had no option after numerous other similar penalties have been handed out this season.

I would like to know where these 3 place grid drops are coming from though.
I thought it was a fixed penalty of 5 places?

I really must read the rules one of these days, although I doubt that would help much as the stewards seem to make it up as they go along...
 

The Artist.....

Champion Elect
Brogan said:
I was expecting a penalty after seeing the Qualifying this morning.
Not saying it was justified but the stewards had no option after numerous other similar penalties have been handed out this season.

I would like to know where these 3 place grid drops are coming from though.
I thought it was a fixed penalty of 5 places?

I really must read the rules one of these days, although I doubt that would help much as the stewards seem to make it up as they go along...
The rule is that the stewards may decide on a grid drop at their discretion:

"31.6 In the event of a driving infringement during any practice session the Stewards may drop the driver such
number of grid positions as they consider appropriate. Unless it is completely clear that a driver
committed a driving infringement any such incident will normally be investigated after the relevant
session, any penalty imposed shall not be subject to appeal."

Hence how they gave Schumacher a grid penalty to the back of the grid in Monaco.....

There is no regulated grid drop, so as to allow discretion by the stewards.
 

Brogan

🦶 Leg end
Staff member
Thanks for that.

I wasn't aware it was worded in such a way as to allow the stewards total discretion over the number of grid positions that could be awarded.
 

The Artist.....

Champion Elect
I have to admit that I looked it up in Singapore, when people in "the other place" were shouting the house down about the penalty that was meted out following the blocking of Barichello.....

It was amazing the bile that confronted anyone who dared to say that it wasn't FIA bias... Even with evidence from the sporting regs... I know I was confronted with people saying "But there's no room for discretion... it's a fixed penalty".....
 

gribbli

Points Scorer
Valued Member
When they have different stewards for every race, how can there be any parity in penalties if stewards are to use their discretion? How exactly did they quantify a 3 place drop? Especially when the penality not only penalises the one driver, but also rewards 3 other drivers.....what about a 4th, 5th?

Surely if, using their discretion they honestly beleived he affected Coulthards lap chances of improving his position (which will all know he didnt), they would move him back up behind Coulthard so that Coulthard himself would be rewarded for Heidfelds so called mistake.

Obviously the above shows that the practicalities of penalties is a world of difference to the ideals of them. (Personally i think if they really want to give a penalty to put the drivers in their place they should just have the two drivers in question swap positions on the grid)

I think they should go back to the old qualifying system, and without the stupid race fuel in qualifying (which ruins races) and give drivers back the hour they had to put a final timing down so that they dont have to make up all of these stupid penalities because of the poor qualifying structure currently used.
 
Top Bottom