Drivers divided on new F1 penalty points system

Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus E20 is launched over the top of Fernando Alonso (ESP) Ferrari F2012, at the start of the race. Formula One World Championship, Rd12, Belgian Grand Prix, Race, Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, Sunday 2 September 2012.
Romain Grosjean crashed heavily at the start of the 2012 Belgium GP

Lotus driver Romain Grosjean is in favour of Formula 1’s move to enhance its penalty system, but some drivers believe the system may be inconsistent.

Last year, the Frenchman became the first Formula 1 driver in years to serve a race ban, following a string of first-lap crashes.

He admitted to RMC Sport it may seem “ironic” that he therefore supports a system that could lead directly to more race bans.

It is reported that errant drivers will earn ‘demerit’-style points against their FIA super license for on and off-track indiscretions, leading to race bans.

Grosjean said: “If there is a nice system that comes in, why not?¬†Right now, it is the stewards who decide: it’s like boxing or judo, it’s arbitrary.”

But not everyone on the grid is so accepting. Jules Bianchi, Marussia’s rookie driver, said the new system also sounds too arbitrary.

“I’ve heard that the sanctions could vary from 1 to 3 points,” he said. “They’re going to say ‘You did it in this way, so 1 point. You did it in another way, so 2 points.”

“So it won’t be consistent,” added Bianchi.

Another opponent is Formula 1’s reigning world champion, Sebastian Vettel.

“I don’t like it,” the Red Bull driver admitted.

“I’ve seen a sketch of it (the plan) and I think you have the potential of scoring points for some things that are not entirely in our hands, and small things that at the end of the day the consequence could be very big,” added Vettel. (GMM)