Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin, Albert Park, 2022

Vettel fined £4,100 for riding moped on track after practice

2022 Australian Grand Prix

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Sebastian Vettel has been fined for riding a moped on the track after the end of today’s first practice session.

The Aston Martin driver used a scooter to return to the pits after his car broke down towards the end of the first hour of running. The stewards found this was a violation of the sporting rules and fined him £4,100 (€5,000).

Having spoken to Vettel, the stewards confirmed he intended for a marshal to accompany him on the scooter, but rode off when he did not appear. He used the track to return to the circuit instead of the access roads around it.

“Car five [Vettel] stopped on the circuit due to a mechanical issue,” the stewards explained. “At the end of the session, Vettel sought a way to return to his pit.

“A marshal was at the location with a scooter. Vettel asked if he could drive the scooter in order to return to his pit. The marshal assented.

“Vettel got on the scooter, expecting the marshal to get on behind him. When he didn’t get on, Vettel departed alone for the pit, without the prior approval to do so. Meanwhile, the marshal was trying to contact race control for instructions.

“In driving on the track to his pit, instead of the designated route, Vettel breached Article 26.7 of the Formula 1 Sporting Regulations, which prohibits anyone from being on the track in the five-minute period after the end of a session, with the exception of specifically identified personnel, which makes no provision for drivers to have such access unless specifically authorised.”

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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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34 comments on “Vettel fined £4,100 for riding moped on track after practice”

  1. You get the feeling that was a ‘bucket list’ thing for Vettel to tick off towards eventually retiring :D

    1. I had that in my mind too :)

  2. Coventry Climax
    8th April 2022, 12:39

    Ah, F1. Sad.

    1. He couldn’t drive the car…they should have atleast let him drive the moped ! May go down as the costliest moped rental ever.

  3. He couldn’t drive the car…they should have atleast let him drive the moped ! May go down as the costliest moped rental ever.

  4. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    8th April 2022, 12:50

    Hey F1 can enforce that rule but can’t enforce the rules properly in the final race of the championship accidentally giving the championship away to another driver.

    1. But since that other driver was way more deserving, that’s ok.

      1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
        8th April 2022, 18:20

        @esploratore1 yes, the other driver was more deserving… for sure.

  5. 5k is nothing for an F1 driver but still, gotta love the hipocrisy of F1 milking this on social media but at the same time FIA deeming it as dangerous and illegal. Pinnacle of motorsport.

  6. ian dearing
    8th April 2022, 13:20

    Given the new RD has highlighted the wearing of studs and jewellery in the event notes for some reason I’m expecting a few more fines this weekend. Ham should boost their coffers a bit at least.

    1. I have been racing for years in the SCCA, VARA, NASA, etc. and we’ve always been required not to wear jewelry. Chains, watches, etc. are especially dangerous. The reason is that if you’re in an extreme fire, the metal heats up and can do horrible damage.

      Not sure why everyone thinks a safety rule that’s been around forever in lower forms of motorsport is suddenly some conspiracy to get Hamilton.

  7. They should pay him 5k for providing fans some entertainment.

    I watched entire thing and it seemed fun and entertianing while there was no other track action..

    Maybe they should let safety car drift around corners when broken down f1 cars are being removed..

    But at minimum F1 driver on a scooter.

    1. The safety car was fun to watch in Spa last year :)

    2. Jockey Ewing
      8th April 2022, 16:10

      Yeah, pretty sure, the income from the advertisements side was likely much more than 5k for F1.
      Also I agree, last year Spa was a pretty good advert, for the safety car’s marque.

      Now a scooter or moped company could approach Vettel, and make a funny advert, and some gold together. Easy to snap opportunity. Although, send the money to me for the idea ;) Otherwise I will approach my 10penny law specialist :D

  8. johnandtonic
    8th April 2022, 13:54

    It was reported that the Race Director reiterated the rules on wearing jewelry while driving (apparently broken) and now SV is riding a moped on track. Both rules have there foundation in safety and are so rudimentary they could be understood and followed by a child. Given the drivers made much of rules being followed at the end of last year and issues of safety at the last race you would think they would be able to comply with the basics.

    Do you they really care as much as they say or do they choose which to apply?

    1. Do you they really care as much as they say or do they choose which to apply?

      Anyone who has ever read F1’s sporting regulations and the FIA’s International Sporting Code know the answer to this question all too well.
      Everything is applied selectively and inconsistently, if it’s even applied at all.

  9. Hope they make the pic of Seb on track on a scooter a “Caption This”!

  10. Chris Horton
    8th April 2022, 14:07

    Ridiculous fine.

    I do however wish Seb had his helmet on properly when he was riding back, with what happened to Schuey and also Jules. No more life changing/ending head injuries please.

  11. Did he put in a fast sector time?

    1. Faster than Williams

  12. Dutchguy (@justarandomdutchguy)
    8th April 2022, 14:27

    bloody killjoys

  13. It wasn’t the face he drove a moped on track, it was the fact he overtook a Mercedes in doing so. :oP

    1. It’s so funny, Ted was speculating it was due to not wearing his helmet properly while riding. lol, I thought it was lame, but I totally believed it. Todt would have. Mr. EU Road Safety would have suspended Seb for the season for that.

  14. PMccarthy_is_a_legend (@pmccarthy_is_a_legend)
    8th April 2022, 15:41

    I can understand people saying, aw it was harmless and the fans enjoyed. Fair enough but the FIA got this right in my opinion. We can’t have drivers commandeering scooters and riding it around the track as they wish. That’s what access roads are for.

  15. Why is the headline in GBP?
    I guess the fine was determined in EUR (the rounded amount), or maybe USD.

    1. Maybe because this is a British website, Sherlock.

  16. He’s basically fined for being a living human being, doing something harmless, and not being a robot. I wish we could arrange so the fans of the sport can pay this fine, not because he can’t, but just as a statement. In any case, at least I can say what’s on my mind (not that the likes of Domenicalli care, except if it can be spinned and twisted.

  17. Surprising there was no mention of inadequate wearing of his helmet given the FIA related safety campaign

  18. as a regular Monza racegoer I can safely state that this 5 minute after the session rule thing is totally not respected by some tens of thousands people on a regular annual basis
    can’t wait to get fined 5000Euros this september and proceed to not pay them

  19. Seb is no fool. He knew that he was breaking the rules by riding the scooter on track, and he also knew that the footage of him with his No War helmet waving to the crowd would be worth any reasonable fine imposed upon him. Good stuff.

  20. So racing at a place, where you can LITERALLY see the smoke coming off from a missile is deemed safe by FIA and yet riding at 50kph by a professional driver on a closed circuit is deemed dangerous? I watch comedy central on regular basis and even there they dont have jokes like that.

  21. Mohammed bin Sulayem can have another fine dinner with friends

  22. Somehow, i doubt he’ll care. In fact the publicity it brought him, Aston Martin and their team sponsors (and will continue to do so for years), it’s probably pretty good value for money!

    In all seriousness, even the fine suggests the FIA didn’t really care. It was a rule breach and they just had to be seen to uphold it to set a precedent.

Comments are closed.