Sergio Perez to Start from Pitlane After Power Unit Allocation Violation

October 8, 2023Kimberly Kay
Formula 1

Following Sergio Perez’s damage sustained in the Qatar Grand Prix Sprint in a three car scuffle that took Perez out of the race. During the rebuild the FIA stewards have noted that Red Bill replaced the chassis due to damage sustained in the crash. The issue was that the build progressed beyond the survival cell stage – containing the fuel tank and cockpit – without FIA supervision. Because the FIA stewards weren’t present during replacement the rebuild is being deemed as a separate car which is breach of the sporting regulations. Perez is now required to start the GP from pitlane after exceeding the prescribed number of power unit components by taking a fifth internal combustion engine, turbocharger, MGU-H and MGU-K plus a fourth control electronics package as part of the repairs.

Perez may also face an addition time penalty pending FIA steward review. The Red Bull team began working on the car almost immediately after the car was recovered and brought back to the pitlane. The issue is that the cars are to be made available for FIA inspection. The Specific language state, “[The Car] must be covered and ready for FIA seals to be applied in order to ensure that they remain secure until the following day.” Given the fact that Red Bull started working on the car immediately they were also in direct breach of this regulation.

The FIA stewards summoned Red Bull but the outcome is not yet known. We will report back with any additional sanctions.