Ferrari’s bid to have Sebastian Vettel’s Canadian Grand Prix penalty re-assessed has been rejected.

The team sought a secondary review of the five-second penalty issued to its driver which ultimately cost Vettel and the team their first win of the 2019 season in Montréal.

Vettel was originally ruled to have returned to the circuit in an unsafe manner after going off-track at the Turn 3/4 chicane, forcing Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton to brake to avoid a collision. The penalty issued by the stewards handed Hamilton – who crossed the finish line behind Vettel – the race win.

Ferrari claimed it had seven pieces of “overwhelming” new evidence to present to the same Stewards panel at a hearing at the Circuit Paul Ricard which took place between Friday’s two practice sessions at the French Grand Prix.

The team failed to present any evidence that the Stewards were prepared to consider significant enough to overturn their original penalty, the softest penalty they had at their disposal under the Sporting Regulations.

Five items of this evidence were rejected on the basis they were “available before the end of the competition”. This evidence included analysis of the telemetry data of Vettel’s car, video analysis of multiple camera views, post-race and video images and analysis of the GPS racing line data of both Hamilton and Vettel in the lap of the incident and the preceding race laps.

The two genuinely new pieces of evidence – namely a video analysis performed by Karun Chandhok for Sky Sports F1 and video footage from the onboard camera facing Vettel – were also both rejected. The former, while “new” evidence, was “not significant and relevant as this is a personal opinion by a third party”, the Stewards ruled, while the camera footage evidence “can be seen within other available video” footage.

The stewards had at their discretion, but did not exercise, the right to increase the original penalty if they felt the request to reconsider their decision was a waste of their time.


The Stewards’ decision in full:

The Stewards received a petition from Scuderia Ferrari for them to review, in accordance with Article 14 of the FIA International Sporting Code, the following decision made by the Stewards at the 2019 Canadian Grand Prix Competition: Document 42 – 2019 Canadian Grand Prix. The Stewards, summoned the team (Document 47) and held a hearing at 14:15 on Friday 21st June, 2019.

The Stewards heard the team representative, Laurent Mekies, who made a presentation to the Stewards. Having examined the evidence presented by the team, the Stewards determine the following:

Decision: There are no significant and relevant new elements which were unavailable to the parties at the time of the competition concerned. Reasons : According to Article 14 of the FIA International Sporting Code and Article 2.2 of the FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations, only those elements may be regarded as “new”, which have not been available to Scuderia Ferrari before the end of the Event (18:44 on June 9, 2019 – end of scrutineering).

Scuderia Ferrari presented the following elements in the hearing :

(i) analysis of the telemetry data of VET’s car, including car attitude channels;
(ii) a video analysis of the camera views (front view, top view, onboard cameras of VET and HAM) prepared after the race;
(iii) a video analysis performed by Karun Chandhok for Sky Sports after the race;
(iv) a video of VET’s face camera, which was released by F1 Limited after the race;
(v) post-race and video images;
(vi) analysis of the GPS racing line data of both HAM and VET in the Situation lap and in the previous race laps; and
(vii) Witness statement of VET (the “VET WS”).

Elements (i), (ii), (v), (vi) & (vii) were available before the end of the competition.

Element (iii) was new but not significant and relevant as this is a personal opinion by a third party.

Element (iv) was new but not significant and relevant as the evidence contained in this video footage can be seen within other available video.


Image via Michael Potts Photography

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.
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