Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali criticised Felipe Massa’s drive-through penalty during the Brazilian Grand Prix which potentially cost the team second place in the constructors’ championship.
Massa was penalised for cutting across the pit lane entry line during the race, which drivers had been warned not to do.
Domenicali called Massa’s penalty “a bit extreme and forced… because I don’t think Felipe’s move gave him any advantage”.
Massa was running in fourth place before the penalty but dropped to seventh at the chequered flag. “With the points he could have scored the outcome of the constructors’ championship could have been different,” rued Domenicali.
Mercedes beat Ferrari to second in the standings by six points, which is the same as the difference between fourth and seventh place in a race.
Massa said: “I was having a really great race up until the moment I was given a penalty for crossing the white line. I don’t think I deserved a drive-through and I believe it was very unfair.”
“I am very disappointed because today I could have finished fourth or third.” Massa added he believed Fernando Alonso would have let him finish on the podium had he been running fourth behind his team mate in the closing stages.
After the race Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn said both his drivers had complained Massa was repeatedly crossing the white line before he was penalised.