Force India duo could face race ban

Date published: August 29 2017 - Editor

Force India have warned Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon that they face the prospect of a one-race ban should they repeat their Belgian coming together.

Not for the first time this season the team-mates collided in a grand prix when Perez, on two separate occasions, pushed Ocon against the wall.

While they escaped without incident in the first, the second cost the team vital points as both cars were damaged with Ocon recovering to finish P9 and Perez later retiring.

Force India chief operating officer Otmar Szafnauer has warned that the next incident could result in a race ban.

He told Autosport: “Yes. If it happens again, we have to figure it out.

“We would have to start thinking about who we would stick in the car.”

He added: “I am disappointed that they couldn’t sort it out, and that the team has to now play big brother.

“That is disappointing. But the team comes first and that is what we have to do.”

Asked whether Force India should have been harder on their drivers in the wake of the previous incidents – they had issues in Canada, Azerbaijan and Hungary – Szafnauer said: “If we would have done that initially, maybe this wouldn’t have happened if we had rules of engagement.

“So you can say that we lost out on some points.

“But there is always that balance between the show and allowing them to race and pushing each other, and artificially controlling it, which we don’t like to do.”