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Kevin Magnussen

Magnussen told to 'stay at home' for causing 'unacceptable' Miami sprint chaos

The Haas driver has drawn criticism for his racing tactics in the Miami Grand Prix sprint.

KMAG Miami
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Kevin Magnussen has been told to 'stay at home' by McLaren boss Andrea Stella following his driving in the Miami Grand Prix sprint.

Magnussen received 35 seconds of time penalties during the 19-lap race for going off track and maintaining an advantage and also cutting the chicane as he defended eighth place from Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton.

The Dane aimed to keep the three-time F1 champion at bay to allow Haas team-mate Nico Hulkenberg to score points, a strategy that worked to great effect as he finished seventh.

Post-race, Magnussen was unapologetic about his actions, believing them necessary, but did note that he felt 'stupid' driving in the manner he did, picking up three penalty points in the process, taking his tally to eight.

Hamilton was unconcerned about Magnussen's driving post-sprint, but McLaren team principal Stella has called for drivers in such scenarios to be benched in the future.

Speaking to media, including RacingNews365, Stella pulled no punches. He said: "For me, it is relatively simple in this case because we have behaviour being intentional in terms of damaging another competitor.

"This behaviour is perpetuated within the same race, and repeated over the season. How can be penalties be cumulative? They should be exponential.

"It is not five plus five plus five equals 15. Five plus five plus five should equal maybe needing to spend a weekend at home with your family, reflecting on your sportsmanship and then come back.

"Then we will see if you have become loyal, fair and sportsmanlike to your fellow competitors, [and if so] then you can stay in this business.

"It is completely unacceptable."

'It is cruel, tough to take'

Lando Norris, however, offered a conflicting view to his team boss, believing Magnussen was "smart" in how he defended for his team-mate.

"It's kind of like Monaco," said Norris. "If your team-mate was ninth and you cannot overtake, you would do a Fernando [Alonso] a couple of years ago and just block everyone.

"You could cut the track and know you are going to get a penalty, but you see your team-mate, know they can box, and you can do it, you know you're getting a penalty, but you played the team game.

"It depends how far you want to push, so I think it is cruel, and it is tough to take when you are the other driver. What he did was smart.

"He did nothing to deserve black flags, like everything he did to get the penalties he got was just running off and not giving the position back.

"It is something we brought up several times with the stewards."

The stewards did investigate Magnussen post-race for unsportsmanlike behaviour, but following a lengthy discussion opted to take no further action.

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