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Grosjean handed Monaco grid penalty

NEWS STORY
13/05/2018

If Barcelona is difficult when it comes to passing, Monaco is even more so, and Romain Grosjean will head there in just under a fortnight's time aware that he has a three-place grid penalty for causing the incident which wiped out three cars on the opening lap of today's Spanish Grand Prix.

Losing control of his car at the entry to Turn 3, the Frenchman spun his car back on to the track in front of the chasing pack. In the melee that followed, Nico Hulkenberg and Pierre Gasly were eliminated.

"There's not much to say," said the Haas driver, whose teammate Kevin Magnussen went on to score 8 points. "I lost the rear end in turn three and I just spun.

"If you look at the footage, I had wanted to avoid contact with my teammate. Kevin had a bit of a wobble, I lifted off the throttle, and then the car just went.

"I'm sorry for the others that were involved," he added, "there wasn't much I could do once the car went. Kevin had a good race, which is good for the team. I had wanted a steady race, but that wasn't today."

The stewards did indeed look at the footage and they had plenty to say.

Grosjean was following Magnussen who had a momentary loss of control, they agreed. Grosjean avoided his teammate which caused him to lose control of the car to the left of the track at the entry to Turn 3.

Grosjean explained to the Stewards that he felt that his momentum was going to carry him to the centre of the track, and therefore made the decision to apply power in an attempt to cross to the right side of the track and get out of the way of the cars behind. However, while crossing he moved into the line of Hulkenberg and Gasly, and all three cars were involved in a collision that took them out of the race.

Grosjean stated to the stewards that he made the decision to cross the track, trying to avoid the other cars and that he felt this was his best option. However, the stewards found that while it is speculation as to where his car would have ended up had he chosen other alternatives, it is certain that while crossing the track in front of the following pack of cars, which he chose to do, that a collision occurred.

Further, in reviewing the video, the stewards found that the car was following the line on the left side of the track and was almost fully off the track, when he made the decision to cross it.

The stewards therefore chose to penalise the Haas driver, handing him a 3-place grid penalty for the next race and 2 penalty points bringing his total up to 5.

Check out our Sunday gallery from Barcelona, here.

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