Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll hit with a 3-place grid penalty for 2022 F1 Australian GP; to start from the pitlane

Lance Stroll was penalized with a three-place grid drop for causing a collision with Nicholas Latifi in the first session of qualifying, ahead of the 2022 Australian GP. The Aston Martin driver, however, will be starting his race from the pitlane.

The two Canadians clashed between Turns 5 and 6 of the Albert Park Circuit, bringing out the first red flag of the qualifying session. Both drivers were summoned to the stewards after qualifying and Stroll was found guilty of causing the collision. The Aston Martin driver has also been reprimanded with 2 penalty points to his license, which brings his penalty points tally to a total of 7 points over 12 months.

Explaining the incident and the stewards’ decision, the FIA statement said:

“LAT [Nicholas Latifi] pulled off course to the left and slowed at the exit of turn 4 to let cars by, the last of which was STR [Lance Stroll]. At the exit of turn 5, STR appeared to not accelerate and was in the middle of the track. LAT made the decision to accelerate and pass STR on the right as STR was moving right toward the right hand edge of the track where the track curves slightly to the right on the run to turn 6. Contact was made between STR’s right front wheel and LAT’s left rear wheel, with the subsequent damage putting both cars out of the session. The Stewards find that STR was predominantly to blame for the collision because of his lack of situational awareness of LAT’s passing manoeuvre.”

Both Canadians were on a cooling lap when they clashed. While fans reacting to the incident deemed Latifi the ’new Mazepin’, Lance Stroll was largely to blame for causing the collision. The Williams driver is now being trolled by F1 fans as he has brought out the red flag for the third consecutive race weekend since the season commenced.

Lance Stroll permitted to start the Australian GP from the pitlane

After being reprimanded with a three-place grid drop, Aston Martin’s request to allow Lance Stroll to start the race from the pitlane has been granted by the FIA. The advantage of starting from the pitlane is that the team can change parts in his car and give him fresh tires to start the race.

Permitting the Aston Martin driver to start from the pitlane, the FIA statement said:

“The Stewards have received a request from Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant F1 Team to allow Car 18 to start the race despite failing to set a qualifying time in Q1. In accordance with Article 42.2 of the FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations, the Stewards grant permission for Car 18, Lance Stroll, to start the race, as the driver has set satisfactory times in practice at this Event. The car will be placed on the grid in accordance with Article 42.2 of the FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations.”

While Lance Stroll has been heavily criticized for being outperformed by reserve driver Nico Hulkenberg in the first two race weekends, the clash will only further add to his woes of being judged for his skillset. With Sebastian Vettel back in the car, the Canadian driver will have to raise his bar to match his teammate in the upcoming races.

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