Double penalty costs Ricciardo French GP points finish
Daniel Ricciardo has dropped from seventh place to 11th in the final results of the French Grand Prix after receiving two separate penalties for incidents on the last lap.
Alfa Romeo driver Kimi Raikkonen now moves up to seventh, with McLaren's Lando Norris eighth, Ricciardo's teammate Nico Hulkenberg ninth and Red Bull's Pierre Gasly moving into the points in 10th.
Ricciardo was involved in a fraught battle for seventh place with Norris and Raikkonen which saw him twice go off the track, firstly while battling the McLaren driver at Turns 8/9, and secondly while trying to pass the Alfa Romeo on the straight after that.
The stewards reviewed the evidence and decided that the two incidents should be considered separately.
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In the first Ricciardo was judged to have “left the circuit and re-joined unsafely forcing another driver off the track.”
The stewards described the action thus: “Ricciardo started to pass Norris on the outside at Turn 8. At the exit of the corner he distinctly left the track and the Stewards determined that he re-joined at an angle that forced Norris off the track to avoid the collision.
“The Stewards accepted Ricciardo’s explanation that when he was re-joining the track, he had slowed considerably, going down extra gears and locking up the front left tyre. He also stated that the rumble strips in the turn made the car more difficult to control.
“However, the Stewards considered that the sequence of events constituted re-joining the track unsafely, and he subsequently took the position from Norris.”
In the second incident Ricciardo was deemed to have “left the track and gained a lasting advantage passing another car” while re-passing Raikkonen, who had jumped ahead when the Australian tangled with Norris.
The stewards noted: “Following the incident at turn 8 with Norris, Raikkonen managed to pass both Norris and Ricciardo. Ricciardo, who by then had regained control of his car then chased Raikkonen from turn 9 and subsequently passed Raikkonen. Raikkonen defended his position on the straight moving slightly to the right.
“However, Raikkonen never put any part of his car off the track and he did not make any move to the right while any part of Ricciardo’s car was alongside, and did not crowd Ricciardo off the track. To make the pass Ricciardo drove off track and then subsequently completed the pass, gaining a lasting advantage.
“The Stewards reviewed the case to see if it was a continuation of the previous incident. However, Ricciardo clearly had regained control of the car following his incident with Norris and the pass off-track was a separate incident.”
Speaking before he was summoned to the stewards, Ricciardo made it clear that he’d done his best to stay on track while battling Norris.
“I'm sure they'll watch the onboard, but the thing is, obviously I did all I could to stay on the track, but with this new surface as well, you can see there's a shiny line which is full of grip, anything off that is literally like marbles," Ricciardo said.
“I was trying to do my best to stay on. To be honest, for the team I really hope we keep the points, but for my side I'm glad I tried, I have no regrets whatever happens, because it's the last lap, it's a position, and it's never my style to sit back and be the conservative one in battle.”
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