Fans Removed from Grandstands During FP2, Leclerc Fastest Again

November 17, 2023Ramon Jones
Formula 1

Thus far the Las Vegas Grand prix has been filled with controversy from the start. In what was supposed to be one of the most memorable and festive grand prix of all time. It is being remembered for all of the wrong reasons. In FP1 Carlos Sainz was Forced to Retire after a manhole was dislodged from the pavement causing major damage to the bottom of his car and the power unit. While the incident wasn’t Sainz’s fault the FIA stewards then doubled double and handed Sainz a 10 place grid penalty.

The Steward Issued the Following Statements for Sainz Penalty

“The stewards determine that notwithstanding the fact that the damage was caused by highly unusual external circumstances, Article 2.1 of the Formula 1 Sporting Regulations obliges all officials, including the Stewards, to apply the regulations as they are written,” said the announcement. “Accordingly, the mandatory penalty specified under Article 28.3 of the Sporting Regulations must be applied. The stewards note that if they had the authority to grant a derogation in what they consider in this case to be mitigating, unusual and unfortunate circumstances, they would have done so, however the regulations do not allow such action.”

The punishment seems overly punitive considering the incident was caused by an improperly vetted manhole on the pavement. On the flip side for Ferrari, Charles Leclerc’s sim racing time seems to be playing well into his hands as he runs fastest again in FP2. Unfortunately, Sainz will already be at a disadvantage heading into qualifying despite running second fastest in FP2. The session was delayed as the track marshals had not finished vetting all of the drain covers on the circuit.

Las Vegas Grand Prix Social Media Statement

The Las Vegas Grand Prix previously posted the following statement before deleting it for why fans were removed from the stands. “Due to logistical considerations for our fans and our staff, we have made the determination that we will be closing all Las Vegas Grand Prix fan areas at 1.30am. We look forward to welcoming fans back later today for exciting FP3 and qualifying sessions”.

Due to this the circuit officials mandated that all fans be removed form grandstands despite being ticket holders. The fans were not happy about this decision after already being robbed of 51 minutes of action in FP1. The decision was made 30 minutes before the start of FP2. The fans took to social media to express their frustrations.

Another Said

Some fans were even threatened with arrest

Unfortunately the race weekend has gotten off to a shaky start. FP3 is scheduled for Friday 8:30 PM local time with qualifying at midnight thereafter.

Full FP2 Results

116Charles LeclercFERRARI1:35.26539
255Carlos SainzFERRARI1:35.782+0.517s39
314Fernando AlonsoASTON MARTIN ARAMCO MERCEDES1:35.793+0.528s38
411Sergio PerezRED BULL RACING HONDA RBPT1:36.085+0.820s36
577Valtteri BottasALFA ROMEO FERRARI1:36.129+0.864s36
61Max VerstappenRED BULL RACING HONDA RBPT1:36.183+0.918s37
727Nico HulkenbergHAAS FERRARI1:36.489+1.224s33
818Lance StrollASTON MARTIN ARAMCO MERCEDES1:36.496+1.231s41
944Lewis HamiltonMERCEDES1:36.663+1.398s42
1023Alexander AlbonWILLIAMS MERCEDES1:36.688+1.423s42
114Lando NorrisMCLAREN MERCEDES1:36.864+1.599s33
1263George RussellMERCEDES1:36.890+1.625s37
1320Kevin MagnussenHAAS FERRARI1:36.917+1.652s37
1481Oscar PiastriMCLAREN MERCEDES1:36.987+1.722s35
1510Pierre GaslyALPINE RENAULT1:37.134+1.869s33
1631Esteban OconALPINE RENAULT1:37.241+1.976s37
1722Yuki TsunodaALPHATAURI HONDA RBPT1:37.412+2.147s41
1824Zhou GuanyuALFA ROMEO FERRARI1:37.656+2.391s36
193Daniel RicciardoALPHATAURI HONDA RBPT1:37.680+2.415s40
202Logan SargeantWILLIAMS MERCEDES1:38.140+2.875s42