F3 driver Kari penalised for driving wrong way along track in “very dangerous” incident

Formula 3

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Formula 3 driver Niko Kari has been penalised for driving the wrong way along the track in what the stewards called a “very dangerous” incident.

|The Jenzer driver missed the pit lane entrance at the end of today’s sprint race and then turned around on track to drive back to it. He was given a five-place grid drop for tomorrow’s Formula 3 feature race.

“The driver missed the pit entrance,” explained the stewards. “After realising that, he turned the car around and drove in the opposite direction of the race for approximatively 50 metres.

“In the hearing, the driver realised and acknowledged his mistake. The stewards considered this manoeuvre to be very dangerous.”

Kari was a late signing for Jenzer and did not participate in pre-season testing this year. He originally qualified in 25th place for the feature race but following the penalty will line up 29th, as rival Kush Maini has to start from the pits.

Kari previously drove in F3 in 2019, before switching to European Le Mans Series to race in prototypes during 2020 and then taking a year out of racing altogether in 2021.

Another penalty was issued to ART driver Gregoire Saucy, who will fall from third on the grid to sixth after he was given a three-place grid drop. The penalty was issued following contact with his team mate Victor Martins which saw both drivers retire from today’s sprint race.

Two penalty points were added to Kari and Saucy’s licenses for their incidents.

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Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a motorsport and automotive journalist with a particular interest in hybrid systems, electrification, batteries and new fuel technologies....

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10 comments on “F3 driver Kari penalised for driving wrong way along track in “very dangerous” incident”

  1. Still better than F1’s Canadians though

  2. That is a very mild punishment for such a stupid and dangerous move. Is that because of their age? This even should cost you your regular driver’s license, let alone a racing license.

  3. And you believed that Maldonado was crazy

  4. How does this guy deserve to be on a race track??

  5. How do you get in F3 and not know you can’t do that

    1. @the-edge this is also the third year that he has been racing in Formula 3, and he’s been active in motorsport since 2015 – he should be aware that this is something you should not do on a race track. That said, it’s not the first pit lane incident he’s been involved in – back in 2016, having been involved in an altercation on track, he rammed another driver in the pit lane after the race.

  6. That should be a straight DSQ from all sessions, and review of license…

  7. RandomMallard
    19th March 2022, 21:46

    If anyone wants to see something pretty weird (and it isn’t directly related to this story, it’s just the driving backwards that reminded me), back at Jeddah last year, the F2 cars were lead the wrong way around the circuit behind the SC to get from their paddock to the F1 pitlane before the feature race while they were carrying out track/barrier repairs further around. Apparently it’s not completely unheard of, but the difference this time was that it was broadcast, which is quite rare. It;s quite an interesting and curious watch actually.

    1. At the end of the F1 race at Spa-Francorchamps drivers cross the finish line, drive through La Source then enter the pit lane in the wrong direction. I think this is the only race on the calendar where the race winner doesn’t get to do a “victory lap”.

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