New penalty system for 2004

After today's meeting of the FIA and team bosses, president Max Mosley confirmed that drive-through and stop-and-go penalties would be done away with this season. In the case of an on-track incident, a driver will no longer face an instant ...

After today's meeting of the FIA and team bosses, president Max Mosley confirmed that drive-through and stop-and-go penalties would be done away with this season. In the case of an on-track incident, a driver will no longer face an instant punishment but instead the situation will be considered post-race and a penalty awarded if the stewards decide one is warranted. Three penalties could lead to a race suspension.

"We are going to tell the drivers at the first race that we will no longer have drive-through or stop-go penalties where there is an incident between two cars but one or both cars continue in the race," Mosley told Reuters.

"There will be a hearing after the race and then a penalty will be imposed, depending on the gravity of the offence. If that happens three times in a season the stewards are going to look very seriously into giving a one-race suspension. It won't be automatic but they will look at it very seriously."

There has been some discontent with the on-the-spot penalty system as used last year, with some drivers saying it was inconsistent due to different stewards at different races. The new system is similar to points being awarded to a road license, which can result in a driving ban should too many accumulate.

"This is more flexible than that," Mosley said of the comparison. "But there is the principle that someone who keeps on causing an accident in a dangerous way will be looking at a suspension. But we don't want to discourage people from racing."

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Series Formula 1