The Qatar stewards have announced that Valtteri Bottas will drop 3 places on the grid for today’s Qatar Grand Prix.
Of the three drivers summoned by the stewards post-qualifying, the Finn was the last to be seen, however his was the first ‘verdict’ to be announced.
Having reviewed video, telemetry and the marshalling system evidence, the stewards head that Bottas admitted he did not notice the yellow flag displayed at Flag Point 16.6 and conceded that he did not reduce speed as required in the yellow flag area despite noting that Pierre Gasly was stationary on the pit straight.
Deeming the failure to respect the single yellow flag a breach of Appendix H, Art. 2.5.5.b) of the FIA International Sporting Code and noncompliance with Race Director’s Event Notes 7.2, the stewards deem that Bottas drops of 3 grid positions and is handed 1 penalty point, bringing his 12 month total to 5.
Bottas was shown a single waved yellow flag as he approached the start/finish line at the end of his final flying lap in Q3, due to Pierre Gasly’s AlphaTauri which was stopped beside the pit wall. The stewards said the Mercedes driver “admitted he did not notice the yellow flag displayed at flag point 16.6 and conceded that he did not reduce speed as required in the yellow flag area despite noting that car 10 [Gasly] was stationary on the pit straight,” the stewards noted.
The penalties for Verstappen and Bottas will promote Gasly, who originally qualified fourth, to the front row of the grid for today’s race.