Disqualified star dropped to back of F1 grid
Williams’ Alexander Albon will start from the back of the grid for the Australian Grand Prix after being disqualified from qualifying due to an insufficient fuel sample.
Albon’s #23 car will begin the race from the back of the 20-car field after he could not provide a fuel test sample to stewards.
F1 cars have to produce at least a one litre fuel sample so the FIA can carry out its checks after the session.
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“After qualifying Car 23 had insufficient fuel to yield the required 1.0 litre sample,” read the stewards report.
“Given this situation, Car 23 is not in compliance with the requirements of Article 6.5 of the FIA Formula One Technical Regulations.
“According to Art. 6.5.2 competitors must ensure that a 1.0 litre sample of fuel may be taken from the car at any time.
“The procedure was followed however the 1.0 litre sample of fuel was unable to be taken.”
Albon had been 16th-fastest in Qualifying 1, and while he didn’t participate in Q2 he still caused a delay by stopping on the side of the track on his in-lap in Q1. Stewards later ruled he would be able to start the race, albeit from the back.
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Williams’ head of vehicle performance Dave Robson said spending more time out in the pitlane and the outlap “race” with other drivers may have played a role in having depleted fuel levels.
“We could see a problem as he came towards the pitlane at the end of that lap where something wasn’t quite right, so we opted to stop the car just to make sure we didn’t damage anything,” Robson explained ahead of the verdict.
“I think the fact that we had to go and queue at the end of the pitlane after the red flag to get that lap in meant that the out lap was then a lot more aggressive than we had planned.
“So, I think that’s why we were a bit lower than we would have liked.”
The Thai driver is set to share the back row with Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll, who was penalised for a run-in with the other Williams of Nicholas Latifi in the final minutes of Q1.
Starting grid Aussie GP:
|2.||Max Verstappen||Red Bull|
|3.||Sergio Perez||Red Bull|
|12.||Valtteri Bottas||Alfa Romeo|
|14.||Zhou Guanyu||Alfa Romeo|
|17.||Sebastian Vettel||Aston Martin|
|19.||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin|
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