Sebastian Vettel joins this club of seemingly harsh F1 disqualifications

11-08-2021 18:00
F1 News
Sebastian Vettel joins this club of seemingly harsh F1 disqualifications

Sebastian Vettel's efforts for a second-place finish for Aston Martin in the Hungarian Grand Prix came to waste after the FIA and the team were unable to extract one litre of fuel from the car after the race. The German driver was disqualified from the event. It's a seemingly harsh penalty but without those kinds of penalties, the door opens for F1 teams to exploit unfair advantages or potential safety breaches. The four-time World Champion joins this club of drivers who have picked up disqualifications since the turbo-hybrid era started in 2014. 

Sebastian Vettel - 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix

Vettel finished second in the Hungarian Grand Prix, benefiting from a first corner collision caused by Valtteri Bottas. The crash wiped out three of the four top cars and Vettel advanced to the podium places. Throughout the race, he was hunting down eventual winner Esteban Ocon but failed to close the gap significantly enough.

After all races, the FIA take one litre of fuel from the cars to complete a test which ensures everything was running smoothly. But they were only able to extract 0.3 litres of fuel from the car and therefore handed Vettel with a DSQ. 

Renault - 2019 Japanese Grand Prix

Both Renault driver Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg scored points in the 2019 Japanese Grand Prix, but it was a result that would later be taken away from them. Racing Point, now known as Aston Martin, lodged a protest and officials found that both cars were running with an illegal driver-aid system. 

The brake bias system was the cause of the problem. The ruling said: "The brake balance adjustment system in question acts as a driver aid by saving the driver from having to make a number of adjustments during a lap. The stewards note that there is a clear distinction between this system and one which provides actual feedback control, which would be a substitute for driver skills or reflexes."

Daniel Ricciardo - 2019 Singapore Grand Prix

Just a few weeks earlier, Ricciardo picked up another disqualification. This time in qualifying. It was discovered that his MGU-K had exceeded the power limit in the first qualifying session. The Australian was due to start from 8th position but started from the back of the grid. 

Raikkonen and Gasly - 2019 Azerbaijan Grand Prix 

Yet another disqualification during a qualifying session. In the streets of Baku, Raikkonen was due to start the race from eighth but the ruling meant he started from the pitlane. The Stewards find that the front wing of car 7 deflected more than 5mm under a load of 60 N. Where are we heard about Flexi-wings before? 

In what turned out to be a busy day for the stewards, Pierre Gasly was also disqualified from the same qualifying session. The then Red Bull drivers' Honda-powered car exceeded the maximum allowed fuel mass flow of 100 kg/h.

Ocon and Magnussen - 2018 United States Grand Prix

On the first lap of the 2018 Grand Prix in America, Esteban Ocon's Force India exceeded the maximum allowed fuel mass flow. The Frenchman crossed the line in eighth place and tweeted about his frustrations when the stewards revealed the outcome. 

The stewards were busy once again, with a second disqualification from this race. Kevin Magnussen finished ninth, but the Haas car had used more fuel than is allowed during a Formula 1 race. They had used 0.1kg too much! 

Romain Grosjean - 2018 Italian Grand Prix

One of Grosjean's best results for Haas was removed with a disqualification. The Frenchman finished sixth but lost the place because the floor used on the Haas car turned out to be illegal. Haas appealed the case, but the disqualification stayed in place. 

Felipe Massa - 2015 Brazilian Grand Prix

A painful one for Felipe Massa. In front of his home fans, the Williams driver was disqualified from the 2015 Brazilian Grand Prix. The stewards found that his tyres breached temperature limits before the start of the race. These limits were put in place following Sebastian Vettel's tyre blowout in the Belgium Grand Prix earlier in the season. The tyre was 27c warmer than the limit. 

Red Bull - 2014 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Both Red Bull drivers Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo were kicked out of qualifying. Once again, the FIA noted that their front wings were too flexible. Vettel and Ricciardo both found themselves qualifying in the top six, but were forced to start the race from the back of the grid. 

Pastor Maldonado - 2014 British Grand Prix 

A very topical disqualification. Lotus failed to provide 1 litre of fuel to the stewards after qualifying. Maldonado was therefore kicked out of qualifying and had to start the race from the back of the grid. He eventually retired 49 laps in with an exhaust issue. 

Daniel Ricciardo - 2014 Australian Grand Prix

More pain for the drivers racing in their home race. In the first Grand Prix during the turbo-hybrid era, the Red Bull car exceeded the fuel flow limit. Ricciardo crossed the line in second, a result which still stands as his best-ever finish across the line in Melbourne. That was taken away from him. In fact, Ricciardo has only finished his home race four times. 

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