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Formula 1

Hearing set as Alfa requests review of Raikkonen penalty

by Edd Straw
2 min read

Alfa Romeo has successfully petitioned for a review of the 30-second post-race penalty that cost Kimi Raikkonen ninth place in the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, with a hearing taking place at 11am Sunday.

The penalty cost Alfa Romeo its first points finish of the season, with Raikkonen relegated to 13th in the final results and Alpine drivers Esteban Ocon and Fernando Alonso promoted to ninth and 10th places respectively.

In order for the review to be successful and the penalty to be overturned, Alfa Romeo will be required to bring fresh evidence to the stewards that was not originally considered.

Stewards considered the fresh evidence in a post-qualifying hearing on Saturday, which led to the review being confirmed.

An FIA statement said: “In accordance with Article 14 of the International Sporting Code, and following the petition for review by Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN, lodged on the 29th of April 2021, the team manager and such witnesses as the competitor may request are required to appear via video conference at 17:00hrs on Saturday, 1 May 2021.”

Large 2021 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Sunday (3)

The penalty was issued for Raikkonen failing to take the restart of the race at Imola after the red flag in the eighth position that he should have held following his spin while under the safety car – a mistake that cost him two places.

He was initially told to retake his position, which is permitted provided it is done before the first safety car line. However, the rules also prevent overtaking to do so once the safety car lights have been extinguished, leading to Raikkonen being told he could not reclaim his position.

Raikkonen, therefore, took the restart in 10th place, but the rules state that if a driver cannot reclaim the correct position they must enter the pitlane and take the restart from there once the field has passed.

The case was argued extensively after the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, with the stewards accepting there were a number of contradictions in the regulations but emphasising that the rule requiring an out of position car to come into the pits is consistent. This has led to the possibility the rule could be revised to prevent a repeat of the situation.

It’s unclear what new evidence Alfa Romeo will present, but precedent indicates that a strong case will need to be prevented for there to be any chance of the penalty being rescinded.

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