The FIA admitted they made a mistake when they decided not to penalise Max Verstappen for impeding drivers at the Singapore Grand Prix Qualifying.
After Singapore Grand Prix Qualifying, Max Verstappen received two reprimands for two separate cases of impeding drivers.
The first reprimand came as a result of Verstappen’s impeding of Yuki Tsunoda, and the second one for holding a queue of cars in the pitlane.
The problem with this is that in the past drivers regularly received grid penalties for similar infringements.
This was also noted by several drivers, including Lewis Hamilton, who had fun at the Japanese Grand Prix Thursday press conference, after Verstappen’s team-mate Sergio Perez declined to comment on the incident.
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Now, Autosport reports that during Friday’s Japanese Grand Prix team managers’ meeting, the FIA admitted that not penalizing Verstappen was a mistake.
More specifically, the steward who was on duty in Singapore, Matteo Perini, “admitted that on review the on-track reprimand decision handed to Verstappen should have been a grid penalty”.
Perini also said that in the future drivers will receive a three-place grid penalty for similar offenses, and that “the Verstappen decision will not be used as precedent and will in effect be erased from the database of past incidents that stewards refer to when making calls”.
It is not known if and how the FIA will deal with the fact that Verstappen started the Singapore Grand Prix at least three places higher than he should have, and therefore other teams were potentially robbed of more points in the race.