Mahaveer Raghunathan, MP Motorsport, F2, 2019

F2’s Raghunathan closing on another ban after scoring 20th penalty point

Formula 2

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Formula 2 driver Mahaveer Raghunathan is two-thirds of the way towards collecting a race weekend ban for the second time this year after picking up another penalty in today’s qualifying session.

The MP Motorsport driver was given two penalty points on his licence after he was found to have set a fastest sector time despite passing a yellow flag. The infringement means he is now on a total of eight penalty points.

Raghunathan was previously banned from the Austrian round of the championship after exceeding 12 penalty points over the course of the first nine races. Those 12 points were deducted after his ban was served. Each F2 round features two races.

He has committed a number of different transgressions since the season began in Bahrain, where he collected his first penalty for passing the chequered flag twice. He also failed to stop for the weigh bridge and passed a rival under Safety Car conditions in Baku. He picked up a further two penalties in Monaco after tangling with Jack Aitken and driving through the pit lane exit on lap one.

Raghunathan’s most serious infraction came at Paul Ricard where the stewards ruled he failed to follow the Virtual Safety Car instructions for three laps in a row and gave him three penalty points for each lap.

Today’s error also earned him a three-place grid penalty. His team mate Jordan King was given the same penalty and licence endorsement for the same reason. Aitken was investigated for the same incident, but cleared when the stewards ruled he “just entered the yellow flag sector in the moment the yellow flags came out, and taking into account that the relevant section includes a quick corner, the driver had no realistic chance to slow down more than he did.”

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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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21 comments on “F2’s Raghunathan closing on another ban after scoring 20th penalty point”

  1. Does someone need to remind him that these are not the “good” points (i.e. championship points) that drivers should aspire to collect?

    On a more serious note, I wonder if the FIA ever foresaw a situation like this, where a driver was racking up penalty points quickly even after serving a ban. Maybe a driver picking up another ban within a year of the earlier one should be banned for n+1 successive events (where ‘n’ was the number of events the driver was previously banned for)?

    Back to humour – eh, he’s a fellow Indian, good to see he’s taken our driving “standards” to the international stage ;)

    1. like your humour!

    2. On a more serious note, how has this guy still got a racing licence, he racked up 12 penalty points in the first 5 rounds of the season and as a result was banned from the Austrian round, and now he has picked up an additional 8 penalty points in just 3 rounds and is languishing in 20th place in the championship on zero points …… can’t see him being F2 much longer.

    3. Its a shame that Raghunathan and Maini have been getting all the attention for the wrong reasons over the last couple of years, while Jehan Daruvala is currently in 3rd place in F3, and has been putting in respectable performances in other championships too.

      1. @sundark – fair point.

  2. Yeakel Edward
    30th August 2019, 23:00

    Passing the checkered flag twice? How do you do that lol.

    1. He wanted to do some “Blockies” ;)

    2. In case you really don’t know: he was a lap down, and once he passed the checkered flag behind the leader he went on to do another lap at racing speed and pass the checkered flag again and then do his own cooldown lap

  3. Does this driver have no radio in his car?
    In the PITs is no one attentive to what is happening on the track?

  4. Neil (@neilosjames)
    31st August 2019, 1:45

    I think he should just do the decent thing, accept he’s way out of his depth and drop down to see if F3 is more his thing.

    Drivers with such an obvious lack of ability shouldn’t be allowed to ‘compete’ at this level.

  5. 1 point per lap he IGNORED under yellow flags is very generous if you ask me. Once is a mistake. Twice is bl**dy careless…3? That’s just pure neglect and should have deserved a straight out ban…just remember the furore when Rosberg ignored a yellow flag at one corner when setting the pole sitting lap back a few years…and this kid gets off with a few points and no penalty?

    1. @Dave Well, technically he didn’t ignore yellows as he slowed down significantly enough to meet the requirements of the double-waved yellows. It was pointless for people to make a big fuss out of it at the time rather than accept the fact straight away. Furthermore, a couple of other drivers (Vettel and Ricciardo) also drove through the yellow-flag section relatively fast, and the latter to be more precise drove equally fast to Rosberg or even slightly more aggressively with Alonso still standing still sideways, and Ricciardo from similar speeds still managed to slow down quickly enough to avoid hitting him, so, therefore, Rosberg could’ve equally done the same had Alonso still being there by the time he reached the same part of the circuit.

    2. I think he got 3 point for each lap he ignored, so 9 total

  6. Pedro Andrade
    31st August 2019, 1:57

    Serious comment: How is a driver like this even allowed in F2?

    Immature comment: Get this guy into F1! We need entertainment!

    1. Get this guy into F1! We need entertainment!

      Grosjean asks: “Am I a joke to you?”

  7. Why is he still allowed to race in F2?

  8. ”set a fastest sector time despite passing a yellow flag.”
    – But wasn’t improving on a sector (or overall lap time) following a yellow-flag section only relevant if the improvement came directly from that specific approx 200m mini-sector were the yellows were active? At least in F1, this is the case.

  9. Weigh bridge aside, everything else is safety related, presumably track marshals are given the all clear to enter the track once the session is finished, you can’t keep driving around.

    Which makes you wonder what would happen if someone actually got hurt? Could they argue the FIA haven’t taken all reasonable steps to ensure peoples safety? The license / penalty point system doesn’t seem to have any impact at all. I do feel for the guy, presumably he’s not enjoying himself, maybe it’s time to do something else.

  10. I no nothing about this guy.
    Is he actually a good racing driver.
    I might do a You Tube search for him later.

    1. Well, he managed to gain places at T1 in Monaco, which was quite impressive.

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