Formula 2 Championship frontrunner Alexander Albon has been handed a five-place grid penalty for causing the pit lane collision with McLaren Formula 1 junior Nyck de Vries during Friday’s action-packed Monaco Feature Race.
The pair was battling for the lead from the start and following a Safety Car interruption – caused by championship leader Lando Norris tipping MP Motorsport’s Ralph Boschung into the wall at Antony Noghes – they elected to take their compulsory pit stops at the end of Lap 13.
Running behind Albon, de Vries took a shallower line into the pit entry, however Albon dived into the pits later and chopped across de Vries’ nose. The contact tipped the Anglo-Thai driver into a spin, while de Vries’ car sustained front end steering damage that would ultimately end the Dutchman’s race.
Albon would also retire from the race having rejoined a lap adrift once his mechanics could retrieve his car from pit entry.
The contact proved costly for both drivers, promoting Russian Time driver Artem Markelov into the lead and the eventual race win. Albon’s DNF saw him slip to third in the Drivers’ Championship standings, while de Vries fell to sixth.
The matter was reviewed by the FIA Stewards, who deemed Albon guilty of causing the collision. He will start Saturday’s Sprint Race from last position.
Image via FIA Formula 2 Championship Media