Vergne relegated to 10th by penalty for Grosjean pass

2014 United States Grand Prix

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Jean-Eric Vergne, Toro Rosso, Circuit of the Americas, 2014Jean-Eric Vergne has been moved back to tenth place in the final classification for the United States Grand Prix following a penalty.

The Toro Rosso driver was given a five-second penalty for making contact with Romain Grosjean while overtaking the Lotus driver.

Vergne had finished tenth on the road behind Pastor Maldonado, but was initially promoted to ninth place by the Lotus driver’s five-second penalty for speeding in the pits. By applying the same penalty to Vergne the stewards effectively restored their original finishing positions.

The stewards ruled Vergne was “predominantly at fault for the contact” with Grosjean and also handed him a penalty point on his licence, taking him to a total of three.

But Vergne said Grosjean left it too late to defend his position when he made his move at turn one. “I saw the opportunity to overtake Romain and I decided to go for it,” he said.

“When he closed the door it was just too late. At the end, this is racing and you have to fight as much as you can. I like fighting, so it was good fun.”

However while Grosjean praised Jenson Button following their fight on the track, he was critical of Vergne.

“Fighting with JB was very very tight but definitely good fun,” he said. “It was less amusing with Jean-Eric though, he broke my front wing and he broke my rear floor which made the car pretty difficult to drive afterwards.”

“I wasn’t very happy about that as the incident cost me [eight place].”

2014 United States Grand Prix

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    Keith Collantine
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    12 comments on “Vergne relegated to 10th by penalty for Grosjean pass”

    1. I agree with Grosjean, a couple of years ago though I would have agreed if it were said about Grosjean.

    2. Awesome to watch, but… yeah, it was a little bit BTCC.

    3. Rubbin’ is racin’ in the USA. Seriously, I thought it was hard but fair. Also this running another driver off the road foul is not a thing. If you have the apex, you have the line. Grosjean had to yield or go off track, being on the outside and having lost the apex. So it has always been.

      1. He slid into his car like they were driving karts. Grosjean /was/ yielding.

      2. @dmw, with a less fragile car you can do that, in F1 it means damaging the thing, or giving people punctures (even others, via sharp carbon fibre debris), so it is more dangerous to do that.

      3. It’s what we call a divebomb in sim racing, Grosjean saw him coming and made room at the apex but Vergne had over-commited and couldn’t stop. The onus on avoiding contact is with the overtaking driver.

    4. @DaveW: Just because Senna once used the “If You don’t go for the gap, then You are no longer a racedriver” excuse, doesn’t make it a valid one. Vergne’s attempt seemed to me to be as bad as Perez’ on Sutil, but due to Grosjeans yielding it didn’t get as bad a result and thus Vergnes punishment was also very mild, i.e. too mild in my view. To be the sole blame of causing another drivers broken front wing and floor isn’t worth only 5 sec in punishment.

      1. not just front wing and floor, also romain’s 8 place

      2. My thoughts, 5 seconds isn’t much at all.

    5. I’m not sure that’ll be a good prospect to look at if you’re a team taking interest in Vergne. I did feel sorry for Grosjean though. Him and Button’s scrap was the highlight of the race for me and wanted to go to the last lap but I guess it just wasn’t meant to be

      1. I think it is. Vergne is fighting for hus F1 career and doing a damn goid job imho.

        He narrowly beat Ricciardo in points in 2012 amd narrowly lost to him in 2013 if I remember correctly. This year he is beating Kvyat despite his weight disadvantage and in additiin to his race pace he’s also showing his feistiness.

        IMHO Sauber made a mistake (probably forced by financial reasons) to sign Ericcsson and should have grabbed Vergne. Now I hope RedBull will let Toro Roso retain (Tost wants to but he is not the one deciding)

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