Penalties galore but Schu escapes

Michael Schumacher not among drivers given post-race penalties

Last Updated: 25/06/12 12:20pm

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Toro Rosso's Jean-Eric Vergne and Sauber driver Kamui Kobayashi have been punished for causing collisions in Valencia with grid drops for the British Grand Prix, but Michael Schumacher has escaped penalty.

Overworked European GP stewards had to spend several hours after Sunday's race wading through a whole host of controversial incidents during the course of the 57-lap epic, with the crash of French rookie Vergne one of the more serious after he drove into the side of Heikki Kovalainen's Caterham as he attempted to pass the Finn, inflicting punctures on both cars.

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Race stewards have duly taken a dim view of Vergne's actions and handed him a double punishment, with a costly 10-place grid drop for the next race combined with a €25,000 fine.

Kobayashi was also brought to book for a collision with Ferrari's Felipe Massa on at turn 10 in the closing stages and will carry a five-place penalty to Silverstone.

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Meanwhile, Schumacher's late surge to third place had appeared under threat after TV replays indicated he briefly had his DRS wing open as he ran ahead of Mark Webber entering a yellow-flag zone following the collision between Pastor Maldonado and Lewis Hamilton.

But after speaking to the Mercedes driver and hearing representations from the team no action was subsequently taken with the stewards deeming Schumacher to have still slowed sufficiently for the waved yellow flags.

The FIA ruling read: "The Stewards considered a report that driver 7 used his DRS in a yellow flag zone and that this allegedly constituted a breach of Yellow Flag regulations [Appendix H Article 2.4.5.1(b)]. Having examined telemetry and video evidence, and heard from the driver and team representatives, the Stewards noted that the driver did make a significant reduction in speed on entering the double waved flag zone."

In an apparent bid to avoid accusations that other drivers, namely Sebastian Vettel and Felipe Massa, had previously been punished for similar incidents in Barcelona this season, the statement added: "This incident differs substantially from that in Round 5 of the 2012 FIA Formula One Championship."

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