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Carlos Sainz

Sainz confused over F1 penalties after twin incidents

Carlos Sainz has pointed to two incidents from the Miami Grand Prix that he feels exposed inconsistencies in the penalty process.

Sainz Imola
To news overview © XPBimages

Carlos Sainz has admitted he is "puzzled" by and "struggles" to understand the decision-making process when it comes to Formula 1 penalties. 

Sainz was hit with a five-second sanction by the stewards after the Miami Grand Prix for contact with McLaren's Oscar Piastri that broke the Australian's front-wing, and caused him to fall out of the points after pitting for repairs. 

The penalty dropped Sainz from fourth on the road to fifth place, promoting Sergio Perez up one spot, but the Ferrari driver feels that the consequences of the contact had an undue weight on the penalty he received.

"I lost minimal control of the car when overtaking Oscar, I unfortunately damaged his front-wing and obviously he went backwards 15 positions - and I got a five-second time penalty," he told media including RacingNews365.

"In that sense, I know we keep thinking we don't look at the outcome [of the contact], but in this case, I think clearly we're still looking at the outcome. 

"In my opinion, the consequences are still having a bit of an affect in the penalty that you get which I don't fully share and I am still a bit puzzled and struggle with it sometimes."

Perez's non-penalty

Sainz also mentioned an incident at the start of the race where Red Bull's Perez got deep on the brakes, locked up and nearly took out team-mate Max Verstappen. 

Although no contact was made by the Mexican, he did cause drivers behind, including Sainz to check up and lose position, but the Spanish driver felt Perez should have been penalised.

"Drivers sometimes don't [understand] either," Sainz added of the penalty situation.

"In this case, I struggle to understand it, and I'm going to put a very clear example that I even shared with Checo at the start - he completely lost control and nearly took two guys out. 

"We were lucky to avoid him, he went off the track and there wasn't a consequence, there wasn't any contact but it cost a lot to my race and other people's races and he didn't get a penalty.

"Because I am completely certain that if Oscar didn't have to pit, then I wouldn't have got a penalty and everyone would be talking about a good overtake and good action on a track where it is extremely difficult to overtake and you had to go for a move like that.

"But on the other hand, Checo didn't touch anyone, we all managed to avoid him and there was no penalty."

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