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Mat Coch writes:
Jean-Eric Vergne's European Grand Prix has gone from bad to worse. The Frenchman was bundled out of qualifying early on by Caterham's Heikki Kovalainen, only to feel the wrath of the stewards after the pair collided during the race itself.
"I felt I was ahead and as I started to turn into the corner, we collided and his front wing clipped my rear wheel," Vergne tried in vain to convince us after the race. "I think it was just a racing incident."
The stewards didn't share his view, slapping the 22-year-old with a ten-place grid penalty for the British Grand Prix, not to mention a 25,000 euro fine.
However that wasn't the end of it. Where fines are usually picked up by the team, Red Bull boss Christian Horner revealed that in this instance Vergne will be expected to settle the debt himself.
"If it's the driver's fault, he has to pay the money," said Horner. "If, for example, a driver is too fast in the pitlane because his limiter is not working properly, then probably the team will pay the fine.
"Jean-Eric will probably have to reach into his own pockets for this one."
While ahead of teammate Daniel Ricciardo in the championship standings pressure is beginning to mount on Vergne. Bursting on to the scenes the Frenchman was widely tipped to be Red Bull's next star, though a strong of disappointing qualifying results seems to be beginning to weigh on the mind of the decision makers in Austria.
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