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Grid penalty for Bianchi

NEWS STORY
25/05/2014

Jules Bianchi has been forced to take a gearbox change ahead of this afternoon's grand prix. The Frenchman qualified nineteenth on the grid and claimed he could have progressed to the second phase of qualifying if not for the yellow flag for Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Massa.

Overnight inspections from the team however found a problem, which it confirmed on Twitter. "Having spent some time looking at Jules' g'box last night, we have found a problem & had to change it this morning," the team revealed.

Bianchi will officially incur a five-place grid penalty as a result of the change; though in reality will only drop two spots as a result of Marcus Ericsson starting the race from the pit lane following the stewards investigation of the incident involving Massa.

Despite only being demoted two places the Marussia driver will not have to carry the unserved part of the penalty forward. Introduced this year drivers carry grid penalties forward if they change a power unit component early. Article 28.4c of the Sporting Regulations, which relates specifically to power unit penalties, states that "if a grid place penalty is imposed, and the driver's grid position is such that the full penalty cannot be applied, the remainder of the penalty will be applied at the driver's next Event."

Luckily for Bianchi the gearbox penalty is applied under Article 28.6, which does not have the same clause. The 24-year-old will therefore start twenty-first and last on today's grid before heading penalty-free to Canada in two weeks time.

Mat Coch

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