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Engine penalties for Red Bull, McLaren, Toro Rosso

04 Sep 2015

Several teams are making engine changes - most of them tactical - at this weekend’s Formula 1 Gran Premio d'Italia 2015. It means a number of drivers will move down the Monza grid, with Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo taking the biggest penalty of 25 places.

In preparation for Singapore, where they feel they have their next best chance of a podium, team principal Christian Horner says Red Bull are throwing “everything” at their Renault-powered RB11s in Italy and getting penalties out of the way. Daniil Kvyat's engine change means a ten-place grid drop, while team mate Ricciardo is demoted 25 thanks to other power unit elements also being replaced.

“We know we’ll struggle here at a power circuit so it makes sense to take all of that by taking sixth engines this weekend so that we are ready to make the best of things next time out,” said Horner. "We've used up the mileage on the units we currently have, and we need to do this to get through to the end of the year. This is the best place to do it.”

Ricciardo echoed his boss’s comments, adding: “Monza’s not obviously a circuit that suits us particularly. We've got the penalties as well, so you know that’s obviously a strategic thing as well - take the penalty here rather than in Singapore where we expect to be very competitive. Then, yeah, have some fun here on Sunday, come through the field as far forward as we can and then Singapore, we can really fight for a podium there.”

McLaren also incur yet more penalties as Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso take their ninth Honda engines of the year, and with them five- and ten-place grid drops respectively. Like Red Bull, the strategy will help the team in Singapore. And at Toro Rosso, Carlos Sainz loses ten grid places thanks to a fresh Renault engine following his problems at the last round in Belgium.

“I’m positive even if I’ll have to take a ten-place grid penalty,” stated the Spanish rookie. “I really want to at least gain all those positions back in the race, as [team mate Max Verstappen] did in Spa… If he can do it, I can do it!”

Meanwhile, Ferrari have upgraded their engine for their home race, and Mercedes have revealed that they have used all seven of their remaining development tokens to update their power unit too. It will have more power, also with a view to 2016 development.