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Why Ferrari failed to get Sainz's Australian GP penalty overturned

Ferrari's attempts to get Carlos Sainz's Australian Grand Prix penalty rescinded failed - here's why.

Ferrari's efforts to get Carlos Sainz reinstated to fourth place in the Australian GP results were unsuccessful, with the Stewards electing to not overturn the five-second time penalty. Following the Australian GP, Ferrari confirmed that they would be requesting a review of the penalty, which was handed out for Sainz's Lap 57 tangle with Aston Martin's Fernando Alonso. Ferrari were required to bring 'new, significant and relevant' evidence to the hearing, with the team choosing to bring the following elements to the table for the meeting: The telemetry data of Sainz’s car after the second restart. Sainz’s witness statement; and Other driver’s witness statements, which amount to records of post-race interviews given by Alonso as well as other drivers. The Stewards noted that Ferrari claimed there was a precedent for all of these elements being used when reviewing a penalty after the Grand Prix.

Why Ferrari's new evidence was rejected

Telemetry The stewards ruled that the "ambiguous" telemetry data produced by Ferrari was "not a significant and relevant new element required to decide who was at fault for the collision", owing to the data already being available to the stewards. The stewards noted Sainz's comments: "He says he braked harder but could not stop the car because of cold tyres. He states further that a slow formation lap contributed to the cold tyres." His comments were rejected, with the stewards ruling: "The conditions of the track and the tyres was something that every competitor needed to take into account and adapt to." Sainz's witness statement This was also ruled to be "not a new significant and relevant element required to decide who was at fault for the collision," with the stewards adding that they would have summoned Sainz if they thought it was necessary to speak to the driver. Sainz's witness statement noted the poor grip and low sun levels, but the stewards decided that "logic would dictate that the position of the sun would have equally impacted other drivers too. It is not a justifiable reason to avoid a penalty for a collision." Other driver's statements The comments made by fellow drivers in the aftermath of the incident were considered to be "not new significant and relevant elements required to decide about the incident." Despite the comments being made after the ruling, they were not considered to be 'significant to their considerations'. Ferrari have since expressed their disappointment at the decision, but maintained that they are 'respectful to the FIA process' .

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