Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Monza, 2022

Verstappen, Perez, Sainz and others join Hamilton in taking engine change penalties

2022 Italian Grand Prix

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The FIA has confirmed six drivers will take grid penalties this weekend for exceeding their maximum allocations of power unit parts.

Mercedes announced yesterday Lewis Hamilton would be one of them. He is taking a fourth new engine, turbocharger, MGU-H and MGU-K, all of which exceeds his allocation, plus a fourth exhaust, which does not. As a result he will start the race from the back of the grid.

Red Bull drivers Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez will each take new engines only, their fourth and fifth examples respectively. Versatppen will take a five-place grid penalty, Perez will drop 10 as he exceeds the limit for the first time.

Ferrari have also fitted a new MGU-K, energy store and control electronics to Carlos Sainz Jnr’s car. He will therefore also start at the back of the grid. The team has exceeded his allocation of gearbox parts as well, though his 10-place grid penalty for that will have no effect.

That leaves Charles Leclerc and George Russell as the only drivers from the three front-running teams without penalties heading into this weekend’s race.

Valtteri Bottas, who retired from last week’s race, will also have a new power unit this weekend. He has significantly exceeded his allocation and has taken his seventh turbocharger and MGU-H. The Alfa Romeo driver has collected a 15-place penalty.

AlphaTauri has also fitted a new power unit to Yuki Tsunoda’s car. He already had a 10-place grid penalty this weekend having collected his fifth reprimand of the season at Zandvoort last week, but will now join Hamilton and Sainz in starting from the back of the grid.

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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 “Verstappen, Perez, Sainz and others join Hamilton in taking engine change penalties”

  1. Well I’m not bothering with qualifying then. Stupid rules.

    1. It’s hard to remember who’s got which penalty and how it is applied, even more so to calculate real starting grid in real time. I feel completely lost watching such qualy sessions, and they will be a rule rather than exceptions, every season in it’s late stage. It’s totally ludicrous, but they could at least add something to the graphics during broadcast. Of course, what they really should do is change the rules and find another way to police this. After all, something is obviously wrong if teams willingly choose to be penalized, even when there’s no any technical reason, but purely for performance. This shouldn’t be a strategic option…

    2. the excitement of qualifying has been for years about seeing the drivers push the cars to the very limit. the starting position is a byproduct, at least that’s how I see it.

  2. Interesting that Red Bull are taking a penalty, I assume to “bank” more engine parts for the remainder of the season. Wonder if he will still win?

    PS I don’t like this consequence of F1’s engine rules, I’d rather see a pure race every week instead of tactically taking penalties.

    1. with such a car advantage on an easy track with lots of DRS and being a top driver, i think he might win.

    2. The rules mean teams if they’re in any doubt their engines will last will always take penalties at the tracks with power advantages and easier passing. If I was the organisers at Spa, Monza and Interlagos I’d be pretty miffed at these rules as they’re the races where this is most likely to have this farcical situation.

      1. On the other hand, those occasions often tend to provide the more interesting races as the podium is uncertain and faster cars fight through the pack.

    3. Extra speed from the fresh engine is probably worth it in Monza.

  3. The pinnacle of motorsport

    1. If F1 drivers all joined Indycar teams, that would be the pinnacle. Awesome fast single seaters, one chassis but lots of engineering scope for the teams and better race tracks than F1 tracks. better racing action and sound for trackside viewers. A series where the best race team and drivers win on their day instead of a series where the best car wins

      1. The only reason Indy car is like this because the dont have these stupid grid penalty rules.

        Just drop this engine rules now that there is a cost cap.

        1. But engine aren’t part of the budget that why they can replace them so much.

  4. F1 2022 AI grid penalties

  5. I thought, well I know that Verstappen took a penalty at the last race. Why another here after only one race? Or is it for different parts?

    I do think these rules need to be changed though. What are they really achieving other than creating an artificial starting order. Maybe this is the idea or maybe they should just be a little more generous.

    1. I think I know the reason for the engine penalty now and how this is different from last weeks. It seems Max will only have a five place penalty.

  6. Red Bull / Verstappen are taking the mickey with these engine penalties now, they could start 10th or 20th every race and still blitz the remaining races!
    I’m sure these engine penalties were designed to encourage engine manufacturers to develop more reliable PU’s, with every driver taking at least one and often several engine penalties throughout the season, it’s just become an annoying interference to the sporting competition. The rule isn’t fit for purpose

    1. I think they could limit the quantity of engine changes in one season or provide even a greater penalty if we want them to stop abusing it. Abusing engine penalties discourages teams from making a reliable car really.

    2. Tsunoda is even more cynical, as his initial penalty was for numerous and repeated rule breaking. His engine penalty is effective “free”.

  7. Always complaints from this point of the season when the strategic penalties start being taken.

    While the principle of grid penalties is unpleasant, the reality of having faster cars at the back and fighting forward throughout the race is more pleasant than having them start at the front and driving off into the distance uncontested.
    Two forever important factors in racing are:
    A- (For the competitor) It’s not where you start, it’s where you finish that matters. And,
    B- (For the viewer) How the result comes about is more important than the finishing order.

    Regardless of the budget cap, grid penalties are still a necessity in F1 while the engines are so expensive and complicated.
    And will continue to be until F1 really takes control of the engines, and manages cost and supply properly – works teams should suffer exactly the same as customer teams do.
    That won’t ever happen, though.

    1. Hi S, “works teams should suffer exactly the same as customer teams do”

      I agree with that, but curious to know how that isn’t the case at the moment.

      1. Money…
        Manufacturer race teams not only have a lot of it, but also don’t have to worry about how much they cost because they don’t pay for them anyway.

  8. It’s starting to look more and more like the component restrictions were just a sneaky way to implement reverse grid races without calling them reverse grid races.

    1. The teams themselves are choosing to make them ‘reverse grid races’….
      They could run the season with fewer components – they’d just need to go slower.

      1. But it seems pretty obvious to me that it’s more beneficial to use more engines and take penalties for the top teams, the potential to go at least to the podium is there if starting last, so, look at what bottas did in monza 2021, verstappen in spa this year, hamilton in brazil last year.

        1. But it seems pretty obvious to me that it’s more beneficial to use more engines and take penalties for the top teams

          Yep. And has been since engine ‘limits’ were first put in place.
          It’s just become more apparent now that the engines have so many individual parts and systems and it has become practically impossible to find a significant performance gain in the design while maintaining sufficient reliability.

          Why sacrifice performance in every event when you can just sacrifice grid position for only 2 or 3 of them?
          It just makes sense to strategically take new engines when neither money, nor the ability to make up the positions, are a problem.

  9. So a LEC-RUS front row, but with Max likely to qualify 1st & therefore start 6th, he’ll probably win again if he gets an issue-free race.

    1. I guess it slightly improves the chances of a Ferrari win (for Charles) at home? This is assuming he puts it on the front row of course.

  10. Sooo… Max receives a 4th engine and Perez a 5th, but it is Perez the one that exceeds the limit for the first time? How is that?

    1. No, Perez is taking a ten place penalty as he exceeds the limit for the first time. That is what the text says.

      Max already exceeded the limit previously and hence doesn’t take a ten place penalty but a five place penalty.

      Exceeding the limit on any component for the first time makes for a ten place penalty. After that you only take a five place hit.

  11. These silly penalties aren’t working if their purpose is to put a soft cap on engine spending. Put the engines under the budget cap instead.

    Unfortunately, every driver taking an engine penalty will be back near the front before half the race is done. The other teams are just that slow.

    1. This is what I noticed and a shame tbh, I don’t even know if it’s just being slower than usual or having got used to giving up easily after these years of penalties.

  12. So those that will go to the back should be excluded from taking part of Q2 and Q1 or excluded from Q3 at all.

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