Grosjean set for pit lane start in Styria after Haas parc ferme breach
Romain Grosjean’s Stryrian Grand Prix weekend has been challenging so far – and after failing to set a time in qualifying, there was more pain for the Frenchman, after he was handed a pit lane start for his team working on his Haas VF-20 while it was under parc ferme rules.
An Energy Recovery System water pump issue for Grosjean in Saturday’s wet qualifying saw him fail to set a time, as team mate Kevin Magnussen progressed into Q2.
But with Haas needing to fix the issue to allow Grosjean to race, the team had no choice but to break the parc ferme rules. And although the stewards warned that Grosjean could technically have been disqualified from the race for the rule breach, they instead opted to hand him a pit lane start penalty instead, noting: “There clearly are mitigating circumstances as the team would not have been able to run the car in the race without breaking the regulations and they approached the stewards before the start of the relevant time period.”
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“It hasn’t been easy on us but I think today let’s see what we can do,” said Grosjean in the hours leading up to the race. “Obviously starting from the pit lane is not ideal. We had a few issues yesterday in quali but we’ll try to come back. Last week 11 cars finished the race so if we can finish and overtake one or two, we’re in the points [if there are the same number as last week].”
While Grosjean will start form the pit lane, team mate Magnussen will begin the race from 15th, as Haas search for their first points – and even first race finish – of 2020, having suffered a double DNF at the Austrian Grand Prix last week.