Perez weighbridge penalty could result in rule tweak

Date published: November 4 2019

Sergio Perez displeased

Sergio Perez’s weighbridge infringement in Austin could result in a change in the regulations with the FIA admitting the punishment didn’t fit the crime in the case of the Mexican, according to a report.

The Racing Point driver started the United States GP from the pitlane after failing to stop at the weighbridge at the end of FP2.

After driving past the weighbridge, citing failure to see the red light, Perez returned to pitlane and the team then practiced a pit stop and changed his tyres amid a bit of confusion.

Article 29.1 a of the FIA sporting regulations states: “A reprimand will be imposed on any driver who fails to stop when signalled to do so, provided the car is then brought back to the FIA garage without delay and that the FIA technical delegate is satisfied the car has been brought back in exactly the same condition it was in when it was driven into the pits.

“Any driver who fails to stop when asked to do so, and then fails to bring the car back to the FIA garage, or if work is carried out on the car before it is returned to the FIA garage, will be required to start the race from the pit lane.”

By the letter of the law, Perez and Racing Point broke the rule as they changed his tyres, but the stewards admitted that the penalty was a bit harsh.

“The penalty imposed is a mandatory penalty specified under the Formula One Sporting Regulations and the Stewards note that they have no discretion to impose an alternative penalty,” their statement read.

Autosport.com reports that “the FIA has acknowledged that the discrepancy between a reprimand and pitlane start is huge, at least for free practice offences” and they are “considering a change for 2020 to the missed weighbridge regulation”.

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