Carlos Sainz Jnr, Ferrari, Hungaroring, 2021

Sainz takes final penalty-free power unit change as Ferrari break curfew

2021 Hungarian Grand Prix

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Ferrari has fitted a new power unit to Carlos Sainz Jnr’s car ahead of the final practice and qualifying session for the Hungarian Grand Prix.

His third power unit, fitted at the 11th round of the 23-race season, is the last new example he can use this year without incurring a penalty.

Ferrari opted to change the power unit out after concerns which arose following analysis of its operation yesterday. It will be sent back to the team’s base at Maranello for further checks.

Members of the team broke the curfew on working hours at the circuit last night in order to complete the change. Teams are permitted to do so twice per season without penalty, and this was the first time Ferrari have done so.

Sainz is the fourth driver on the grid to move onto his third power unit before the halfway mark in the season. Mercedes users George Russell and Sebastian Vettel, and Renault-powered Esteban Ocon have already done so.

Honda is the only manufacturer whose drivers are all still on their second power units. It confirmed yesterday the power unit which was in Max Verstappen’s car when he crashed heavily at Silverstone remains fit for use.

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2021 Hungarian Grand Prix

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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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4 comments on “Sainz takes final penalty-free power unit change as Ferrari break curfew”

  1. An entire PU or only some elements?

    1. Edit: ICE, TC, MGU-H, and EX

  2. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    31st July 2021, 12:27

    So Honda has finally developed the most reliable PU and are leaving the sport?

    What a shame. I grew up with Hondas (my mom’s old civic in the 80s) and Honda Prelude (1st gen 1st batch) and owned 2 Accords that would have outlived me had I not decided to change cars and drive another car. Incredible cars.

  3. The penalty is not as bad as it sounds. There is nothing worse than burning engine during the race – it cost Lewis Hamilton a championship title in 2016, for example.

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