Magnussen to start from pits after weigh bridge error

2016 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Kevin Magnussen will start the Bahrain Grand Prix from the pit lane after failing to stop at the weigh bridge during practice.

Magnussen passed a red light when he was signalled to stop at the weigh bridge during the second practice session.

“The driver failed to stop for weighing during P2 when signalled to do so by the red traffic light,” noted the stewards, “the car was not returned to the FIA garage and work was undertaken”.

Magnussen could have avoided the penalty had his car been taken to the weigh bridge immediately afterwards. Article 29.1 (a) (iv) of the Sporting Regulations notes: “A reprimand will be imposed on any driver who fails to stop when signalled to do so, provided the car is then brought back to the FIA garage without delay and that the FIA technical delegate is satisfied the car has been brought back in exactly the same condition it was in when it was driven into the pits.”

The regulation adds: “Any driver who fails to stop when asked to do so, and then fails to bring the car back to the FIA garage, or if work is carried out on the car before it is returned to the FIA garage, will be required to start the race from the pit lane.”

Magnussen said he failed to stop because he believed the stop light was for another driver. “I saw the red light to indicate the need to stop, which actually was for Daniil Kvyat but in fact the same light was also for me, and that’s what I misunderstood.”

“I didn’t know that you could have two cars called in at the same time. When I saw Daniil [Kvyat] pulling in at the red light, I slowed down in case they’d wave me through but they didn’t. In fact they wanted both of us.”

2016 Bahrain Grand Prix

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    Keith Collantine
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    64 comments on “Magnussen to start from pits after weigh bridge error”

    1. First, a puncture on lap 1 compromising his race, and therefore, decreasing chances for a good result, and now this.

      1. This one is all his fault though.

        1. Facepalm, why is mag back? Just another Dams champion.

          1. Unfortunately many F1 news agencies are not really reporting well what really happened here. And most posters clearly are as result not well informed. Situation is that the red light in the pitlane for FIA weight/control came on in front of Kvyat/Red Bull. Just behind him in the pitlane were Magnussen/Renault. Kvyat dives into the control as supposed to. And then FIA afterwards now say they also wanted Magnussen/Renault to have come in. But. There is NO indicator what so ever, that they actually wanted two cars to come in at same time and not just one as usual.
            Next to this, the penalty is very unusual and very hard. Kvyat got similar penalty last year. But. That was because he did not come in for control during the QUALIFICATION. Magnussen/Renault was here in ordinary free practice, which has limited to absolute no influence on your qualification for the race start.
            Many enjoy to see Palmer do well in the internal teambattle with Magnussen, but this is way beyond reason of how bad he/Renault was treated in this situation.

            1. @Cyber I fully agree with you.

        2. @EF1 I know, but I can understand why he didn’t stop because he arrived in the pit lane directly behind Kvyat.

    2. This is the third time I believe in three years that a rookie is penalised for this. I really wonder how this is communicated to the driver. Surely you don’t keep an eye on that light when you enter the pits every single time, it’s not like there is people crossing the fast lane…

      1. @xtwl On the contrary, how hard is it to paying attention to the most important light at pit entry, it’s not like there is people crossing the fast lane…

        Ignoring pit light at race is instant black flag too, IIRC.

        1. @sonicslv

          I imagine it’s a pretty busy time in a drivers mind coming back into pit lane. Given that you’re not called in that often, I think you can forgive him for his mistake.

          Once he went past it, I wonder if there’s actually any communication to the team to bring it back.

          1. The problem is not he failing to stop immediately. The team can immediately push the car to the weight bridge and if the steward satisfied that there are no changes to the car, he will only get a reprimand. The problem is the team already worked on the car. It’s crystal clear in the rules.

            1. Kvyat/Red Bull had been notified that Kvyat by FIA in advance that he was wanted into the weight/control garage, and they waved at him when going down the pitlane. Magnussen even slowed down and looked in, but none waved at him. AND. FIA had not notified Renault that they wanted Magnussen in for weight/control. Reason why Renault carried on with business as usual in the pitlane/garage when Magnussen rolled in. They normally only take one car in at a time. There are no driver number or car number shown anywhere by FIA when they call a car in. Just a single red light at pitlane. Even if Magnussen/Renault had rolled with a wrong rear wing or an underweight car, and this would have been found in the control, then there would have been could have rolled iZERO penalty to driver/team for neither Qualification, grid position or race start. Reason why this situation and FIA’s decision on delegating Magnussen/Renault to race start in the pitlane is simply totally grotesque. I can only assume that this will indeed be brought up at next driver meeting with FIA for changes on FIA side and the signage. Btw, fun to see how Hamilton now made a non-compliant action (went reverse by own power in the pitlane) in Qualification but got just a reprimand as consequence. Despite it could be argued it was against both safety (another car could have riolled in) and somebody could have mangled with the car before it was inspected by FIA representatives. Rest assured, I do not think Hamilton should have had any more severe penalty, but I do think still the penalty to Magnussen is way off. The huge variation of FIA’s interpretations and consequences of the penalties they dole out are like playing the lottery. This is why F1 lose fans/spectators. A billion dollar sport run like amateur night at your local track.

        2. @sonicslv There is nothing intensive about watching a light, but whilst you’re going at a decent speed, coming into the pits making sure you don’t lock up those precious tyres, are fiddling all kinds of stuff on the wheel, possibly also communicating with the team at that point, etc…

          1. @xtwl Watching the light is a priority here. It just passing a point where you should stop or not. Also the replay and Magnussen himself clearly stated that watching the light itself is not the problem. The problem is he think the light is for Kvyat while in reality the light is for him and Kvyat.

        1. @peartree Not really a rookie but not the most experienced either. I believe last year it was Nasr and before that Kvyat..?

    3. Quick question, I can understand the weighbridge for qualifying and races but why so much for practice? I can’t seem to remember when this rule was bought in.

      1. @f199player I’m also not sure, but I think this is like urine test for other sports. Not all cars is called to the bridge, they are selected randomly.

    4. John vanderHeijden
      1st April 2016, 21:39

      @PorscheF1 (@xtwl) Must say, I am happy not to sit in your car while you drive! They drive 80KM/h or so in pit-lane and with this speed in normal traffic you should see pedestrians, traffic-lights, playing children…. Not to mention those drivers are reckon to be the best in the world! No, it is his own fault he missed that light.

      1. How come almost none of you know the story you are commenting on? He DID see the light. It was on for Kvyat who stopped in. Kevin was directly behind Kvyat and had no way of knowing that this was a red light for two Cars.

    5. Adam (@rocketpanda)
      1st April 2016, 21:39

      Ah come on! Poor guy. Bad start in the first race and now this for the second? Guy can’t catch a break.

      1. Of course he can, he just needs to be aware of his surrondings. Can’t blame anyone but himself for this.

    6. What is this with FIA and KMag? Every single little breach, or alleged breach of ridiculous rules and they will punish him. Apparently Kvyat stopped as he thought the red light was for him – and as such KMag didn’t think it was meant for him. Ridiculous decision by FIA!

      1. The rules around this one a pretty simple really.

        1. Yes, but the signage is not!
          As there IS no sign for second car to come in also. Only one red light!
          And FIA wanted BOTH Kvyat AND Magnussen to come in.
          Go figure. No wonder Renault complained…
          And the penalty is way beyond reason.
          Trouble is FIA destroys any kind of racing on so many levels. While not getting the basics fixed for making racing interesting for the audience.

    7. Maybe it’s about time that all the drivers stand together and say “enough is enough” with FIA and their narrow minded approach to everything. If it was Hamilton who had this confusing incident, where 2 drivers didn’t know which one should go to the weight check, i bet he wouldn’t get any penalty what so ever.

      1. How much more clearly would you like that regulation to be written? If Renault had realised the error right away and taken Magnussen back he would have only had a reprimand. But the driver and the team both messed up and the sanction for the infraction is right there in black and white. I see no reason to assume it would have been different for any other driver.

        1. Hmm, well instead of handing out the hardest penalty in the rulebook, maybe a bit of old fashion communication would be in order? FIA no doubtly have an official in the area that could tell Renault that they were the ones to be weight checked, and i’m sure that Renault wouldn’t have minded going to their worthless control.

          1. Didn’t Brundle get kicked out of the weekend for something similar at monaco years ago so frankly he is pretty lucky.

            Slightly off subject but i never knew why he got the mclaren drive and other than the odd race he didn’t show much. So i also not sure why he is in this Renault & so far he isn’t doing very well either. Though early days but when drivers like Jean Eric & Jamie A were kicked into touch for out performing their teammates why is this guy here?

          2. You’ve gone from saying the penalty would be different for another driver to saying it should be different for this driver. I think the rule is abundantly clear, I prefer to see the rules enforced consistently and it’s down to the teams and drivers to make sure they comply with them.

        2. Did anybody in the world of F1 know that they could take 2 cars into random weight check simultaneously, using one continuous red light?

          Has this occurred before?

        3. In which way did they Mess up? Are you saying they should have known that the light for Kvyat was also meant for Kevin?

          1. He drove through a red light. As infractions go it’s about as simple as they come.

            1. Unfortunately it’s not as simple as they come. The relevant rule does not ban running the red light – it bans skipping the weighbridge. If one is not required on the weighbridge, or you were required but no longer are according to further FIA signal, the state of the light is completely irrelevant (again, unlike the pit exit, where the more logical rule of “you run the light, you get a penalty” applies). It requires both the signal (which is not specified in the regulation, nor is any indication given as to which signal takes precedence in cases of conflict) and the intent from the FIA to be on the weighbridge.

              The red light for the weighbridge (as distinct from the one at pit exit) generally is only meant for one driver at a time. It’s not a red/green light in the way the one at pit exit is, but an on/off red light. I have encountered zero instances of multiple drivers being indicated for weighbridge at the same time, and and as there is only one weighbridge in the FIA garage it would be impossible to justify calling in two cars simultaneously to the bridge, even in practise with the luxury of time reducing the downside to teams. So it was quite legitimate to consider the possibility that a lack of being waved in (especially in conjunction with a one-weighbridge garage being occupied by a different car) may have been meant to indicate a lack of desire to pull one’s specific car – however incorrect that notion turned out to be.

              Kevin attempted to get clarity as to what was wanted from him, and did not receive it. And as one is not permitted to stop at the garage (thanks to Article 27.5 of the Sporting Regulations – being voluntarily stationary without clear cause counts as “unnecessarily slowly”, and the pit lane is included in the areas covered by that rule in a way that run-off areas, for example, are not), Kevin did not have the option of waiting around just in case the FIA, for some bizarre reason, intended to put two cars on a one-car weighbridge. Article 2.1 of the Sporting Regulations requires the assumption that all participants know the regulations, so stopping to ask which signal was meant for Kevin would not have been sufficient to avoid a penalty under Article 27.5, even if the intent was to avoid an infraction under Article 27.1. If the stop signal had been overruled, then no rule forbids that specific light from being run, and unless one has a reason that the regulations will support will work. Only the start/abort lights (Article 36.9 and 37.1 / Article 31.7, 36.11, 36.14 and 41.1) and pit exit (Article 31.2) have the “you ran it, you could get a penalty for it” distinction, and even for the abort lights it’s conditional (if it’s not accompanied by a start/restart procedure or a red flag, the lights can be ignored with impunity – and thanks to the regulations, must be ignored).

              He waited long enough to establish he wasn’t being waved in, interpreted this to mean the red light was only signalling the car in front, and drove off. He was not “signalled to do so” because the light and the actions of the weighbridge staff contradicted each other. My guess is he didn’t mention the red light to Renault until after work was done on the car, or else they’d surely have exercised more caution, but given that the radio restrictions don’t allow conversations about weighbridges, that’s hardly a surprise. It’s not like Renault are allowed to tell Kevin whether he’d acted correctly or not until it was too late for him to change what he was doing… (Yes, he could have informed them so they could have known to return the car if he deemed fit, but we’ve already established that without Renault’s input, Kevin interpreted the conflicting signals he got as the signal not being for him.

              Kevin broke a rule in what appears to be an attempt to follow a different one, that was stymied only because the FIA had managed to engineer a situation in which the only way to avoid breaking a regulation was from sheer guesswork. Yes, once the deed was done, the stewards had no choice but to issue this specific penalty, but a little bit of sense from the FIA – at any one of several points – would have prevented the entire scenario, at least in the case of someone like Jolyon who appeared to be doing everything he could to follow the regulations.

    8. Come on, he failed to stop at the weightbridge during practice(!) and he can no bother with qualifying. Very very harsh rules. Way too harsh.

      1. +1 Completely irrational. Underlines the complaint about poor governance in F1.

    9. You know, I guess elimination qualifying is starting early this race.

    10. FIA wants to mess up qualifying – this is apparently one way to do it!

      How difficult is it for FIA to call him/the team and order a weighing? And during Practice – come on!

      This is FIA abuse and so sad for Magnussen. It underlines what the drivers are saying – the FIA leadership is a joke!

      Go Kev!

      1. How difficult is it for FIA to call him/the team and order a weighing?

        Well the procedure as set down by the rules is that they show the driver a red light and he responds to it. This is what Magnussen failed to do.

        Seriously, I don’t understand why the FIA is getting stick for this. The rule is clear and it is being enforced correctly.

        1. Because we live in the days of the spoon fed generation, where nothing is your own fault anymore and its easier to just blame someone else. Look already how many saying ‘oh that’s not fair, or the FIA is to blame etc etc’, its amusing but also disappointing.

        2. The rule is clear, but the situation was not. And seriously – you just tell the FIA rep i their garage to tell the team to get the car on the weight. Or call them. It is really not that difficult. I think a 10 year old could manage that!!!

          1. By the same token, the driver is responsible for seeing the red light. It’s very normal in racing for cars to be weighed. Even in Karting this is normal after races.

        3. @keithcollantine, because they are harsh. Kmag and Renault have both said, that when kmag went out, Red Bull’s Kvyat was in front of him. The red light came on to Kvyat, and both Renault and Kmag thought it was only to him. However it was not only Kvyat but also Kmag.
          So yes Kmag and Renault made a mistake, and should have a penalty. But a penalty that ruin a race. That’s just bullocks.
          Why didn’t FIA send a message out to the teams which drives there should be weighted.

        4. The rules do not state that a red light is necessary (let alone that it’s the only way for it to be done), or that it cannot be countermanded by other FIA signal. It is rather imprecise, unfortunately. The rule about weighbridges being compulsory on pain of exclusion is reasonable, but it the procedure needs to be done in a clear way that enables compliance through logic rather than guesswork – for example, by specifying that the red light takes precedence over other signals and will be operated like a regular pit exit light, or calling in only one car at a time so that service can be given to cars as and when they’re ready, or just plain allowing drivers to stop to check if the signal’s meant for them or not.

    11. Matthew Coyne
      1st April 2016, 23:12

      Really don’t see how anyone can defend him.

      This is one of the few rules in F1 that are written absolutely crystal clear, there is no room for interpretation within it.

      He missed the weigh bridge which is his mistake, the team then missed that he had missed the weigh bridge, that is the teams mistake – the punishment is fair.

      1. Yes, that’s his fault. But the punishment is very harsh, it is Friday and he already knows he will start from the pits. A grid drop of some kind would have been a better penalty.

      2. What is important – to give the penalty or to have the car weighed! They could just have adressed the team in the garage – Jesus!!!

      3. The rule might be crystal clear. Problem is signaling is not. How should he have known that the light for Kvyat, who he was directly behind, was also meant for him?

      4. OK Tina, sorry, do you really know what you are talking about?
        Lets assume that Magnussen was indeed underweight in that car and he had dived into the weight control and FIA had confirmed him underweight. Do you know what penalty Magnussen then would have had received in that situation in free practice? Nada. Nothing. Zero. No penalty what so ever for neither qualification, nor for the grid position or the race. Those are the rules. Magnussen would have been able to participate in Qualification like normal and he would be assigned his grid position also as normal, based on his qualification time.

        1. He would have received a penalty: the exact same one as he has got for skipping the weighbridge. (Both actions disqualify a driver from qualifying unless the infraction occurs in the race, in which case a DSQ for the race is issued instead).

          1. (For clarity, the relevant regulation here is Article 3.2 of the Sporting Regulations: “Competitors must ensure… …their cars comply with the conditions of eligibility… …throughout practise and the race”. Note that qualifying is considered a practise session for the purposes of all regulations where no qualifying-specific regulations are involved).

    12. He was driving behind a Red Bull. He thought the light only applied to the Red Bull in front of him, not to both cars.

      Easy mistake to make.

    13. Does seem a little harsh…surely a 2 place grid drop would have been better….although Renault may be able to appeal the decision, this must mean he will be excluded from qualifying…as there is no point….

    14. I saw somewhere else that Magnussen came into the pit lane with Kvyat and there was confusion over who was being called to the weigh bridge. I assume that Kvyat was ahead of Magnussen when the light was shown and that caused some confusion. Perhaps they should put the driver number next to the light to avoid this.

      Also, I imagine that Qualifying will now be run with 21 cars as it is pointless for Magnussen to run and waste a set of tyres for the race. Magnussen would be the first elimination at 7 mins then.

      1. @ambroserpm Finally a critism to how FIA does things which are actually useful…….

      2. Is there any indication in the rules that says if it’s shown for one driver, then the other may pass?

        As I understand it, if the light was red, all cars should stop?

        1. You are probably thinking about the pitlane exit light?
          This weight/control is random controlled, driver/car combos picked by e.g. lottery. FIA then ‘normally’ info the pitwall of the driver’s team that he is getting called in. In this case, FIA informed Red Bull that Kvyat should dive into the control when getting in. FIA did not inform Renault about wanting to see Magnussen. FIA ‘normally’ also have 1-2 guys standing along the pitlane to wave in the driver/car they want in for inspection. They waved and guided Kvyat in. But nobody waved at Magnussen, who was at that time just behind Kvyat. No driver name or car number is shown next to the red light, so this is bound to be something that absolutely will have to be changed. IF FIA still want to maintain the right to take out two cars at the same time for control. Which they btw ‘normally’ never do. Think I have ever seen it just 3 times or so over past 20 years. Granted, I have not been sitting in the pitlane looking at the FIA control light at every race. ;o)

        2. Technically, it’s not obliged to mean any cars at all, let alone “two” or “all”. However, convention with lights usually means everyone to whom it is referred should stop. Where this gets more complicated is that the FIA weighbridge doesn’t have the capacity to take two cars at a time, so it wouldn’t make sense to stop two cars at once because of the unfair delay to teams while the second car queues (stopping for the length of time needed to do a weighbridge check is fair, being made to wait while another car from a rival team does its weighbridge check… …not so much). So it would be rational to interpret the light as being for one person only, especially since you can’t stop in the pit lane without a valid reason. Whether that would be a valid interpretation is of course another matter, and here it turns out it was not.

      3. Cause it is just a random red light, which acts on cars entering the pits, it seems a bit much to make a system to include drivers numbers. Less is more in this case. It has been working for many years. You would suspect that a team would know the rules and could tell him. Or at least ask the FIA how it works. Just one of those things that’s a bit unlucky (the confusion) and could have been done better by the team. It’s how you learn.

        1. Rules discussions aren’t permitted on the radio from team to driver, except in fairly specific circumstances (and I can’t see anything in the radio regulations that would have allowed such a thing here), and besides, it’s not clear how Renault would have known about the weighbridge call had Jolyon not informed them – there’s no requirement for the FIA to inform teams in advance, for timeliness and compliance reasons.

    15. Archit (@architjain07)
      2nd April 2016, 5:33

      I am pretty sure drivers are debriefed when they leave the pits! It must be on their to-do list anyways! FIA can’t be blamed for that! Although a simple communication with the team or a little less harsh penalty would serve the purpose better rather than kicking him right into the back! With Manors having that beast of an engine at the back…Good luck KMag!!

    16. Pretty certain James Hunt would have punched the stewards in the face for this. Listen, the guy overlooked a rule and thus needs a punishment. His responsibility. Fine. But the punishment is ridiculously disproportional to the offence.. and so congrats to the kindergardenesque nanny world we live in for again enforcing rules rather than sporting fairness.
      While we are at it, if they implement halos I stop watching F1. Sorry, but F1 is also a test of courage and the conscious willingness to put ones life on the line. There is almost no manliness left in this sport.

      1. No, the rules and the consequences is clear. Failing to immediately stop to the weight bridge itself is not a problem, because the rule stated the car can immediately pushed back and as long as the stewards deemed the car was not changed at all (i.e. honest mistake), the driver only get a reprimand. What makes Magnussen must start from the pit is Renault worked on the car so nobody can’t prove that the car is definitely not underweight when it enter the pit.

      2. James might have punched the stewards in the face… …and at $5000 and a penalty point per punch, I doubt it would have been a good idea to be near him after the meeting either!

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