Lotus say Vettel, not penalties, spoiled Grosjean’s race

Leave a comment

The greatest damage to Romain Grosjean’s victory chances in the Hungarian Grand Prix was not done by his penalties during and after the race, according to Lotus.

The team believe the real harm to Grosjean’s hopes of scoring his first win in Hungary were done when he got stuck behind Sebastian Vettel.

Grosjean came close to passing Vettel at the start but the Red Bull driver gave him little space on the run to turn one, ensuring the Lotus stayed behind. Grosjean spent the next two stints in Vettel’s wheel tracks.

“It could have been better, yes, but we were not expecting to get stuck behind Vettel at the beginning of the race, to be honest,” team principal Boullier said to Autosport. “After that, the chance for Romain to win was off.”

Boullier added they were able to be flexible with Grosjean’s strategy because of how well the Lotus treated its tires. But as they tried to maneuver Grosjean into a position where he could jump Vettel, he ended up stuck in more traffic.

Grosjean picked up two places during the course of the race. One, for overtaking Felipe Massa off the track, resulted in a drive-through penalty. After the race he was given a further 20-second penalty for colliding with Jenson Button.

FIA returns Manor’s F1 entry fee for 2017

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Good news: Manor Grand Prix Racing Limited got a refund of an entry fee it paid to the FIA to run in this year’s F1 season.

Bad news: Manor still hasn’t run this year, and won’t be for the foreseeable future (especially as Manor’s former leadership staff is moving that team into FIA WEC’s new-look LMP1 class in addition to its LMP2 program).

Manor Group’s receivership outfit, Just Racing Services Limited, went into administration earlier this year. As there was no new buyer for the F1 team, Manor dropped from the 2017 grid before the season.

The FIA said it would return its entry fee to help Manor Group pay off outstanding debts.

It basically means nothing in the grand scheme of things since Manor missed out on 10th place in the constructor’s standings in 2016 and fell from the F1 grid as a result, but hey, it’s a goodwill gesture going into Thanksgiving this week.