GP2 winner Mitch Evans highlights rules inconsistency

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GP2 driver Mitch Evans highlighted a seeming major consistency over the way he and Lewis Hamilton were treated by race stewards at Monza this weekend.

Evans was on the receiving end of an exclusion at Monza after it was found that his GP2 car had failed minimum tyre pressures after qualifying for the support series took place on Friday afternoon

Evans had qualified on the front row for the GP2 feature race, which was held after Formula 1 qualifying on Saturday afternoon. However, the exclusion meant that Evans had to start the race from the back row of the grid.

The New Zealander, a protégé of former Red Bull F1 racer Mark Webber, pulled off a remarkable comeback drive to finish on the podium in third place in the 30-lap race. It also gave him a top six starting position for Sunday's shorter 21-lap sprint race which he put to excellent use with a last-lap pass for victory.

However it was clear that his exclusion on Friday still smarted, and salt was further rubbed into the wound when Lewis Hamilton was put under investigation for low pressure rear tyres on his race-winning Mercedes at the end of the Italian Grand Prix.

The race stewards eventually took no further action against Hamilton and the result stood, leaving Evans wondering why the rules were being interpreted and imposed differently between Formula 1 and GP2.

"Love that consistency. Can I have my front row back then please?" he tweeted after the decision was announced, adding the hashtag "#circus" to express his feelings about the matter.

In the case of the Grand Prix, the stewards determined that the pressure in the tyres concerned were at the minimum starting level recommended by Pirelli when they were fitted to the car. As Mercedes had followed the correct procedure for fitting the tyres, and as Pirelli had overseen the process, the discrepancy in tyre pressure was put down to the tyre warming blankets having been disconnected before the reading was taken.

By contrast, GP2 cars don't use tyre warmers in the feeder series, and the process for fitting and monitoring tyre pressures varies from that used in Formula 1.

The race stewards did acknowledge that the uncertainty and potential inconsistency raised by the situation at Monza did need to be addressed by the sport's ruling body. "The Stewards recommend that the Tyre Manufacturer and the FIA hold further meetings to provide clear guidance to the teams on measurement protocols," the official ruling concluded.

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