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Why Bottas only gets a five-place grid penalty

Why Bottas only gets a five-place grid penalty

22-10-2021 19:24 Last update: 22:17


Mercedes announced during the first free practice session of the United States Grand Prix that Valtteri Bottas will replace his combustion engine. The Finn will receive a five-place grid penalty and will not be on the first or second row of the grid on Sunday.

It's not the first time this season Bottas has taken a grid penalty. It is the third time in four races that the Finn has taken a penalty during the race weekend. Mercedes is already placing the sixth internal combustion engine (ICE) in Bottas' Mercedes. Bottas also started at the back of the grid at the Italian Grand Prix and the Russian Grand Prix.

But why does Bottas only get a five-place penalty, while Lewis Hamilton got a ten-place penalty in Turkey for replacing his ICE? According to the FIA regulations a driver will only receive a five-place penalty if he replaces a part that has already exceeded the limit. Because Bottas has already gone over the free limit of three internal combustion engines earlier this season, when he replaces the same type of part he will now receive a penalty of five places instead of ten.

Bottas not alone

Bottas is not the only one to receive a grid penalty in America. Also Sebastian Vettel and George Russell will start from the back of the grid having changed their fourth engine. It seems Mercedes have not solved the problem with their ICE yet.

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