Lewis Hamilton will start from no higher than sixth position for this weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix after conceding a 5-place grid penalty for an unscheduled gearbox change.
The Brit who struggled with pace in both day and night Friday practice sessions suffered from a hydraulic leak in the season-opening race in Melbourne almost a fortnight ago. While being “fortunate to finish the race” in Australia, the problem still lurked in Bahrain forcing the team to make a gearbox change.
We had a hydraulic leak during the #AusGP and were fortunate to finish the race
— Mercedes-AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) April 6, 2018
Under Article 23.5a of the 2018 Formula 1 Sporting Regulations, each driver must use the same gearbox for six consecutive events.
Both Haas drivers Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen along with Alfa Romeo Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson will also start with a new gearbox this weekend penalty-free as they failed to finish the previous race in Albert Park.
Valteri Bottas also has a free gearbox change this weekend as he was penalised at the Australian Grand Prix allowing the Finn to reset his six events starting from Bahrain this weekend.
Below shows the FIA report regarding the gearbox updates for the above drivers:
Image via FIA and Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team