Romain Grosjean has been demoted two grid places and will start Sunday’s Malaysian Grand Prix from tenth place on the grid. The FIA Stewards rules that the Lotus F1 Team violated pit lane rules during Saturday’s qualifying session.
A review of video footage found that Grosjean had jumped the queue in pit lane at the start of the second phase of qualifying. The majority of the fifteen remaining runners were waiting for the pit exit to be opened so they could post a banker lap time ahead an expected thunderstorm hitting the circuit.
“Any car(s) driven to the end of the pit lane prior to the start or re-start of a practice session must form up in a line in the fast lane and leave in the order they got there unless another car is unduly delayed.” – Article 23.6 of the 2015 FIA Formula 1 Sporting Regulations
The Frenchman qualified among the ten-fastest runners and ultimately finished eighth-quickest in Q3, but was subsequently demoted two grid places.
His penalty has promoted Valtteri Bottas to eighth and Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson up to ninth.
Image via Lotus F1 Team