McLaren’s Lando Norris has been given a three-place grid drop for tomorrow’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix after failing to pit during a red flag in qualifying. Originally qualifying in sixth, Norris will now start tomorrow’s race in ninth.
“Car 4 did not enter the Pit Lane and continued on track during a Red Flag Signal,” is the official line from the FIA.
The incident has also seen Lando given an additional three penalty points, which now takes his total up to eight in the last 12 months. Don’t forget, if a driver gets to 12 points, it’s a race ban.
“The Stewards heard from the driver of Car 4 (Lando Norris) and team representatives and reviewed video and timing evidence,” the FIA document read.
“Norris was just on the long start-finish-straight when red flags were displayed.
“Consequently, red lights were flashing on a panel on the left guardrail and on the car’s dashboard. During the hearing, the driver admitted that he lifted the throttle, braked and was committed to and able to enter the pit lane.
Lando unfortunately receives a three-place grid drop.
He will start from ninth on the grid tomorrow. #AzerbaijanGP 🇦🇿
— McLaren (@McLarenF1) June 5, 2021
“At that moment, he was not sure what to do and asked his team over the radio. Although the team ordered him immediately to enter the pits, it was too late, and Norris crossed the finish line one more time.
“The Stewards assume that if a red flag is not respected during qualifying, a drop of 5 grid positions is appropriate. However, if you consider that the driver only had a very short time to react due to his position on the track, a drop of 3 grid positions is sufficient as an exception.”
His penalty promotes Sergio Perez to sixth, Yuki Tsunoda to seventh and Fernando Alonso to eighth.