Haas fined for unsafe release

Date published: October 3 2016

Haas were hit with a €5000 fine for an unsafe release after Esteban Gutierrez’s front left wheel become detached in the wake of a pit stop at the Malaysian GP.

With the race under a Virtual Safety Car for Lewis Hamilton’s engine failure, Gutierrez came in for his final stop of the afternoon.

However, moments later his Haas VF16 was without its front left wheel, which had become detached.

The Mexican driver escaped without a penalty, however, Haas were handed a €5000 fine.

The Haas Formula 1 team has been fined €5000 for the unsafe release of Esteban Gutierrez during the Malaysian Grand Prix.

The stewards report read: “Having reviewed the audio from the car, the available data and spoken to the driver and team concerned, the Stewards were satisfied that the driver Gutierrez did not know that he was driving the car in an unsafe condition.

“It appears that a mechanical failure led to the wheel being able to be tightly fitted to the car while not actually attached correctly.

“An additional failure occurred in turn one under braking, but the wheel was still retained in an abnormal way until it appears that the failure of the rim blew the wheel past the retention devices.

“Having spoken with the Technical Delegate, the Stewards were satisfied that the retention devices operated within their required design limits.

“However, as some function of the design, part failure or fitting allowed the wheel to come loose on the track, which is considered a serious safety issue, the Stewards determined that this led to the car being released in an unsafe condition.

“In addition to the fine above, the Stewards order that the team provide the Technical Delegate with a report on the failure and all corrective actions.”