No further action over Sainz

13/12/2020
NEWS STORY

Abu Dhabi stewards deem that no further action is required after Carlo Sainz was alleged to have driven unnecessarily slowly in the pit lane.

The stewards viewed video evidence, radio transmissions and telemetry data, in addition to hearing from Carlos Sainz and Lance Stroll as well as their team representatives.

Sainz was advised by his team that he was 2.4 seconds in front of Stroll approaching the pit entry.

There was no instruction from his team to slow down and on approaching the start of the pit lane the Spaniard accelerated as per normal practice, braked briefly to less than 80 km/h just prior to the line and then accelerated up to 80.

This was exactly the same as Sebastian Vettel. (Stroll also braked to below 80 prior to the line then accelerated up to 80 as he crossed the line).

Within the pit lane, Sainz was at 80 km/h for all but approximately 5 seconds when he dropped to no less than 70 km/h.

The stewards estimate this resulted in the Spaniard arriving at his pit stop around 0.6 second later than if he had maintained a speed of 80 km/h.

Therefore, the stewards are not of the view that this action in any way resulted in the team avoiding a "double stack" situation as Vettel was well clear of the pit stop at this time.

The stewards also accepted Sainz' explanation that he was exercising a degree of caution as video evidence confirmed the presence of a lot of other teams’ personnel in the pit lane at the time.

Stroll was able to maintain a speed of 80 km/h in the pit lane except for a very short period of time (approximately 1 second) and therefore the stewards do not consider that it was materially impacted by the actions of Sainz.

The stewards also checked the relative speeds of the cars after leaving their pit stops and could see no evidence of Sainz driving unnecessarily slowly.

Consequently the stewards deemed that no further action was required.

It should be noted that normally the stewards prefer to take decisions of this nature during the race however in this case the necessary telemetry was only available shortly before the finish.

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Published: 13/12/2020
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