Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, Monza, 2015

McLaren and Red Bull drivers take engine penalties

2015 Italian Grand Prix

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Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, Monza, 2015All four McLaren and Red Bull drivers, plus Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz Jnr, have incurred penalties for power unit changes ahead of this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix.

Daniel Ricciardo will be demoted the most places on the grid for this weekend’s race, taking a 25-place penalty after using a sixth engine and fifth turbocharger, MGU-H and MGU-K. Team mate Daniil Kvyat has been penalised 15 places for taking a new engine (his sixth) and turbocharger (his fifth).

Both McLaren drivers have also changed their engines. Fernando Alonso will take a ten-place penalty, as this is the first time he has used a ninth power unit element, while Jenson Button will be moved back five places on the grid, as he had already used a ninth turbocharger and MGU-H.

Carlos Sainz Jnr has also been given a ten-place penalty for using a new engine, his fifth.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 25 comments on “McLaren and Red Bull drivers take engine penalties”

    1. Just wondering… what happens if one day a driver gets pole and is demoted 10 places. Then another driver gets 5th and demoted 5 places. Do they flip a coin, share a grid slot or wrestle in the Roman Coliseum to see who gets the upper hand?
      I agree with the penalties, but they need a different penalty, not grid slots being stretched back further than the actual number of slots.

      1. Not 100% sure, but i think it depends on who got the penalty first, by the FIA’s decision.

        Or, perhaps, the race stewards decide…

        Or we’re gonna see these drivers fight in the Colloseum.. ;)

        1. Previously each penalty was applied in turn and a new grid formed every time. I.e. you moved every driver forwards to fill the grid when applying a penalty.

          Since these new penalties came in the FIA appears to calculate the grid a different way. So what you’re describing sounds possible to me, and I’m not sure what they would do in that scenario. My guess is whoever received the most recent penalty would go behind the other driver/s.

          1. Hmm but wouldn’t that mean that after McLaren receive their 105 place penalty in Belgium on Sat they start 19th and 20th, and the penalty for Vestappen would move him behind the McLarens?

          2. I thought they used to do it so the penalties are applied in order of who received them when, after qualifying was complete.

            It would make a lot more sense to put the bigger penalty behind though.

      2. Doesn’t matter which order driver from 5th starts ahead.

        Driver demoted back from 5th to 10th, then driver demoted from 1st to 10th promotes him to 9th.

        Driver demoted from 1st to 10th promotes 5th to 4th then 5 place penalty demotes to 9th.

        1. Yiu are right. But even when I made a mistake in the statement of this hypothetical scenario, as I waa drowsy, the idea is what happens if 2 drivers end up having to start in the same grid slot? I should have said 1st to 11th and 6th to 11th, for example.

          1. Even on your second example same result, 6th starts ahead no matter who has the penalty applied first.

            Demote 1st to 11th and the driver in 6th position is promoted to 5th, then his 5 place penalty puts him 10th.

            Demote 6th 5 places to 11th then when 1st is demoted 10 places he goes 11th because 11th is promoted forward +1.

      3. 1st–>11th
        5th–>4th

        4th–>9th
        1st–>11th

        I guess you mean:
        1st–>11th
        7th–>6th
        Then:
        6th–>11th
        11th–>11th? (I guess 10th?)

    2. The FIA have just totally shot themselves in the foot on this whole engine mess. First, they want to cut costs, then they want to “greenify” the series, incurring costs. Then, they dont allow manufacturers to freely develop the new engines that are WAY too complex, then they penalize the drivers for the engine manufacturers shortcomings. If I were in charge of Honda, I would pull the plug and tell Mclaren to try Cosworth. Any manufacturer wanting to enter the series had better take a good, long look at how bad Honda, and Renault have had it at trying to play catch up under the current rules. There weren’t a third as many penalties last year, even though it was the first year of the new engine formula. Thats how bad they are trying, and failing, to get on par with Mercedes.

    3. Does anyone know if this year is the biggest difference between most used engines and least?

      It certainly feels absolutely crazy… Surely these position penalty rules need a look at for next year.

      1. @skipgamer

        In 1988, the top-teams ran up to 3 engines per weekend per driver, EuroBrun tried to do the whole season on 6 engines (3 per driver).

        1. Good info thanks.

    4. It amazes me how the FIA tends to find the most stupid way to do everything. These penalties, their applications and loopholes, are a complete joke.

    5. I was wondering, most tracks have a lot more than 20 grid slots, right? So when someone has a penalty why not send them back as far they can go on the grid slots? So Riccardo might start on the 30th grid spot, if there is one, for example.

      I’m kidding, but it’s something to think about when we have grid penalties greater than the number of cars. Mind you I don’t think there would ever be enough grid slots to accommodate McLaren most weekends.;

      1. They can start a lap down?

      2. @weeniebeenie They used to be accumulative in the form of pit-time penalties if I recall correctly. They removed that to avoid insane penalties, but it opened a loophole, and now every week we have somebody exploiting it.

    6. So I was thinking about another loophole one could use. At the start of FP1 put a new engine in the car. Do an outlap come in put another new engine in the car. Do that as many times as possible in all sessions, throw away a race you weren’t gonna have a good result anyway and enjoy the rest of the season with as many new engines/PU as you want

      What I am saying is, put as many new components in the car in a race weekend, receive a 500 grid penalty which only affects you for one race and utilize the components truli in the rest of the races penalty free

      1. someone correct me if i am wrong but i think there is some kind of rule regarding this. hence why mclaren only took two new engines (per driver) a couple of races ago and why redbull are only taking two new (per driver) this week????

      2. Once the tokens are used up, maybe we will see that. For now I would say teams would only try to accumulate as many engine components they think they would need until the next update of that component drops.

    7. According to Autosport, Red Bull will take a double engine change for each of their drivers, as McLaren did at Spa, thereby giving them two new engines for each of Ricciardo and Kvyat going forward.

      1. Maybe Ferrari should go for it at some point too. If they will receive a penalty for a new engine in future. They can have a couple of extra ones and crank up the engine against Mercedes.

    8. all this people will start from the end of the grid and who knows ! Promising race !

    9. Just another case of management stupidity regarding penalties for mechanical failures / repairs / replacements. The teams with the NOT best engines, etc. are already at a disadvantage and then when their stuff breaks (which it is more prone to) they are punished even more to the point of never really getting an opportunity to challenge the best teams…. Just give everybody the same amount of equipment and let them use it as they see fit or need to and when or if they run out then maybe some penalty. But these teams are most probably at the bottom of the $$ list and penalties just make it more hopeless. Slower means poorer and the hole just gets deeper and deeper. The slower / poorer teams are the true sportsmen of F1 as they continue to slave to become competitive even though as the year goes on the future gets more bleak with no points after no points. Thanks, Norris

    10. Hans (@hanswesterbeek)
      4th September 2015, 22:39

      Meanwhile, it appears that Verstappen also had his engine changed. So that makes it two (out of four) engine manufacturers taking penalties for their complete line-up.

      http://www.verstappen.nl/?locatie=bericht&id=2250&lang=en

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