Alfa Romeo Racing has confirmed it will contest the penalties handed to drivers Kimi Räikkönen and Antonio Giovinazzi that cost both drivers a top-ten finish at last weekend’s German Grand Prix.
The Swiss team rejoiced at the Hockenheimring on Sunday as Räikkönen and Giovinazzi crossed the line in seventh and eighth respectively, giving Alfa Romeo their best collective result of the season with a 10-point haul, only to be heartbroken hours later with each driver receiving a 30-second penalty relegating them to 12th and 13th places and out of the points.
The FIA stewards determined that both drivers breached F1’s clutch regulations by using drivers aids for the clutch torque application that could “potentially mimic traction control”, giving them an advantage in the wet standing start.
At the time when the penalties were given, Team Principal Frédéric Vasseur said they would investigate the issue but blamed a malfunction of the clutch that was beyond the team’s control.
“It is extremely disappointing to have both cars penalised and pushed out of the points in what had been such an exciting race,” he said.
“The situation arose during the laps we spent behind the Safety Car ahead of the standing start. We respect the FIA’s process and the stewards’ work, but will appeal this decision as we believe we have the grounds and evidence to have it overturned.”
Alfa Romeo submitted their notification to dispute the penalties on Sunday night at the Hockenheimring and have now confirmed they have formally lodged the paperwork to proceed with their appeal ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix.
A short statement on Twitter said: “Alfa Romeo Racing lodged an appeal against the decision No. 56 and 57 of the Stewards of the 2019 German Grand Prix.”
Räikkönen and Giovinazzi’s misfortune was beneficial for four drivers with the Haas F1 Team duo of Romain Grosjean moving up to seventh and Kevin Magnussen slotting into eighth.
Defending World Champion Lewis Hamilton’s dire race was rescued with a revised ninth place position and he gained two points to extend his lead over Mercedes teammate Valterri Bottas to 41 points. ROKiT Williams’ driver Robert Kubica rounded out the corrected top 10, delivering the British racing team their first point of the season.
The adjusted final classification also saw Alfa Romeo slip to equal eighth in the Constructors’ Championship standings, tied with Haas on 26 points.
Image via Alfa Romeo Racing
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