Mercedes has confirmed Lewis Hamilton will start Sunday’s Brazilian Grand Prix from pit lane after the team opted to break parc ferme conditions to make changes on his Formula 1 car ahead of the race.
Hamilton was resigned to his first Q1 knockout in over a year when he crashed out of qualifying at Interlagos on Saturday, slamming into the barrier on his first flying lap.
Hamilton had been due to line up 20th on the grid on Sunday, requiring approval from the stewards to race after technically failing to qualify for the race.
Mercedes opted to capitalize on Hamilton’s struggles and make changes to his car ahead of the race, as confirmed on Saturday night.
“Lewis will start from pit lane as we will have to break parc ferme, fitting parts of a different specification to those used in qualifying,” a Mercedes spokesperson said.
“Prime among those will be a new power unit, as there is no penalty for doing so in this circumstance. We will confirm in the morning what exactly is being changed.”
Mercedes specified Hamilton will take a new internal combustion engine, MGU-H and turbocharger for the race
Despite Hamilton’s early exit, Valtteri Bottas was able to lead Mercedes to pole position at Interlagos after edging out Ferrari rival Sebastian Vettel in the final stage of qualifying.
The Brazilian Grand Prix is live on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app from 10am ET on Sunday.
The NTT IndyCar Series will be sharing Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the NASCAR Cup Series in a race weekend doubleheader for the second consecutive season, but both series will be on the road course in August 2021.
IMS announced Wednesday that IndyCar will hold an Aug. 14, 2021 race on its 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. It’ll be a day before NASCAR’s premier series runs the same layout for the first time after the Brickyard 400 was contested on the 2.5-mile oval for the first time in 27 years.
This season’s rescheduling of the IndyCar GMR Grand Prix to July 4, 2019 (a day before the Brickyard 400) led to the first NASCAR-IndyCar doubleheader weekend. The Xfinity Series also raced on the IMS road course for the first time July 4 after the IndyCar race ended.
INDYCAR AT IMS THIS WEEKEND: Harvest GP schedule, entry lists
IndyCar will be holding its second race weekend this year at the IMS road course Friday and Saturday with the Harvest GP.
“Our first NASCAR-INDYCAR weekend was a big success last July, with positive feedback from
our loyal fans who watched the races on NBC and from the drivers, teams and participants
involved,” IMS president Douglas Boles said in a statement. “The Xfinity Series’ debut on the IMS road course provided exactly the kind of thrilling action from the green to checkered flags that we anticipated, so we know the teams and drivers of the Cup Series will put on a great show as they turn left and right for the first time at IMS.
“We can’t wait to welcome back fans to see NASCAR and INDYCAR together during this
exciting weekend as we add another memorable chapter in the long, storied history of the
Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”
It also will mark the first NASCAR Cup-IndyCar doubleheader with a crowd as fans weren’t permitted at IMS in July because of the novel coronvavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Over the course of Wednesday, NASCAR is releasing its 36-race slate for next season. IndyCar has yet to release its full 2021 schedule.