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Trulli loses podium for safety car infringement 29 Mar 2009

Jarno Trulli (ITA) Toyota celebrates his third position on the podium.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 1, Australian Grand Prix, Race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Sunday, 29 March 2009

Toyota’s Jarno Trulli has lost his third place in Sunday’s Australian Grand Prix after stewards penalized him for passing under the safety car in the closing laps.

Trulli ran off road near the end of the race, thus losing a place to McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton, but then repassed the world champion once he had rejoined the circuit.

The Italian was given a 10-second stop-go penalty as a result, but since the offence occurred within the final five laps that was translated into a 25-second penalty added to his race time. He thus drops to 12th.

"I can't say how disappointed I am to finish third but have the result questioned," he said. "When the safety car came out towards the end of the race Lewis passed me but soon after he suddenly slowed down and pulled over to the side of the road. I thought he had a problem so I overtook him as there was nothing else I could do."