Stewards uphold Aston protest - results to change

Esteban Ocon (FRA) Alpine F1 Team A523 and Lance Stroll (CDN) Aston Martin F1 Team AMR23 battle for position. 02.07.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 10, Austrian Grand Prix, Spielberg, Austria, Race Day. -, EMail: © Copyright: Bearne / XPB Images
© XPB 

The provisional results of the Austrian Grand Prix have been thrown out, after the stewards ruled in favour of a protest lodged by the Aston Martin team following the end of Sunday's race.

Aston claimed that a number of drivers were not penalised during the race for potential repeated breaches of track limits.

The FIA has since admitted that was unable to keep up with all the reported instances of cars going beyond the painted white lines with all four wheels, as there were over 1200 cases during the 71 laps.

There hadn't been time to refer all the instances to the stewards at the time. While many would have been no more than warnings, repeated infractions could warrant a five second penalty added to a drivers times.

After hearing from Aston Martin team representative Andy Stevenson, Nikolas Tombazis from the FIA, and Diego Ioverno representing Ferrari, the stewards determined that Aston's protest was therefore admissible.

“An examination of the list of deleted lap times provided to the Stewards by Race Control, revealed that a number of track limit infringements had not previously been referred to the Stewards for potential penalty,” the panel explained.

“It was determined that some of these infringements warranted a penalty that was not previously applied when the Provisional Classification was published. These penalties will be reflected in the Final Classification.

“Accordingly, the Protest is upheld and the Protest Fee is returned to the Competitor," the statement concluded.

A separate note from the FIA added that “we will renew our recommendation to the circuit to add a gravel trap at the exit of Turns 9 and 10” for future events, although there are problems accommodating MotoGP events at the venue.

The grid before the start of the race. 02.07.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 10, Austrian Grand Prix, Spielberg, Austria, Race Day. -, EMail: © Copyright: Moy / XPB Images

Having decided on the basic ruling, it's now up to the stewards to go over at all 1200-plus incidents as part of its immediate post-race review..

Among those at risk is Carlos Sainz, who finished in fourth place ahead of Lando Norris and Fernando Alonso. He had already been hit with one five-second penalty for exceeding track limits during the race.

Alpine's Pierre Gasly is also rumoured to be under threat, having finished in ninth place just 1.5s ahead of Aston's Lance Stroll.

In addition, Lewis Hamilton was vocal during the race about Norris and Sergio Perez repeatedly breaching track limits but not receiving any warnings or penalties during the race.

Hamilton himself was another of the total of nine drivers to be penalised for track limit breaches during and immediately after the race.

The FIA did not give an immediate indication about how long the review would take before new results could be published.

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