Bottas handed grid penalty and is first F1 driver to get penalty points

Valtteri Bottas

Williams’ Valtteri Bottas on Saturday became the first Formula One driver to pick up penalty points under a new driving licence-style system introduced this season.

The Finn was also handed a three place grid penalty for Sunday’s Malaysian Grand Prix after stewards ruled that he impeded the Red Bull of Australian Daniel Ricciardo in a rain-hit Qualifying session.

It was the second time in two races that Bottas had been handed a grid penalty, the one in the Australian season-opener resulting from a gearbox change; he will start 18th at Sepang.


Under the new system, any driver collecting 12 penalty points in the space of a year will be given a one race ban.

The stewards ruled that Bottas had not paid attention to the approaching car and impeded Ricciardo through turns 14 and 15.

The Finn, who finished fifth in Melbourne after Ricciardo was disqualified from second, was disappointed with the decision: “I thought it would be OK and that there would be no penalties,” he said. (Reuters)

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  • =El Presidente=

    how can you impede a car that is not eligible to race in the first place??

  • Tamburello1994

    Williams back to earth this week?

  • karlich

    Hmm… it’s a shame for both Ricciardo just as much as it is for Bottas. Under today’s qualifying conditions, I think the penalty was way too harsh. Elsewhere, Kvyat and Alonso collided because as Alonso said he didn’t see Kvyat and didn’t expect him to lunge in, and I am sure he genuinely didn’t see see or expect him. Kvyat was a tad over eager considering the overall bad visibility. Yet they let that pass. Why’d Bottas get such strict treatment – I could imagine he also had a difficult time judging the situation correctly in those 2 corners.

  • Tamburello1994

    I thought Valterri was fine – He held his line. To me its more or less a case of now that Ricciardo drives a real Red Bull he expects people to abdicate position to him. I think he (Ricciardo) could have attacked for position with some aggression instead of expecting Bottas to give up his line. He got jobbed.

  • adgta

    I wonder if the points play havoc with their insurance premiums.