Maldonado excluded from qualifying for fuel breach

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Pastor Maldonado has been excluded from qualifying for the British Grand Prix after the stewards deemed that there was an insufficient amount of fuel left in his Lotus at the end of the session.

The regulations state that each car must be able to provide a one litre fuel sample at the end of qualifying in order to be classified, and after being investigated, the stewards have confirmed that Maldonado’s Lotus E22 did not have enough to meet this requirement.

A statement from the stewards reads:

“There was an insufficient amount of fuel to provide a one litre fuel sample and therefore this is in breach of article 6.6.2 of the FIA Formula 1 Technical Regulations.

“The competitor is, however, allowed to start the race from the back of the grid in front of any cars that failed to set a time within 107% of the fastest time in Q1.”

As a result, Maldonado will start the race from 20th position ahead of the two Caterham drivers.

The Venezuelan driver had qualified in 15th place on Saturday at Silverstone, but his car ground to a halt at the end of the session when it ran out of fuel.

“We had a lack of fuel during the second qualifying session which meant I had to stop the car out on track,” Maldonado explained. “The team are investigating to find out what happened as otherwise the car felt good and we had a strong opportunity to be in the top ten.

“The pace was certainly there this morning and the car was doing what I wanted it to do. We had a good strategy through the difficult weather conditions today so naturally I’m a bit disappointed with where we ended up on the grid.”

Unfortunately for Pastor, he’ll now drop another five places behind the Ferrari and Williams drivers.

Back of the grid for the British GP

14. Valtteri Bottas Williams
15. Felipe Massa Williams
16. Fernando Alonso Ferrari
17. Max Chilton Marussia
18. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari
19. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber
20. Pastor Maldonado Lotus
21. Marcus Ericsson Caterham
22. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham

Ken Roczen signs with HEP Progressive Ecstar Suzuki for 2023

Roczen Progressive Ecstar Suzuki
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ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).

“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.

“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”

For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.

“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.

“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”

Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.

“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.