Marcus Ericsson - Photo Credit: Alastair Staley/GP2 Series Media Service

It's been a bad start to the season for Marcus Ericsson - Photo Credit: Alastair Staley/GP2 Series Media Service

Marcus Ericsson's poor start to the GP2 Series season has been made worse after he was handed a ten place grid penalty for causing the sprint race collision with Davide Valsecchi that sent the Italian's car into a barrel roll.

Ericsson tried to capitalise on a mistake from Valsecchi on lap 13, but clipped him as they turned into the high-speed turn five left-hander. This pitched Valsecchi's car upside down into the gravel trap, with Ericsson also forced to retire on the spot.

The stewards found him to have breached the sporting regulations by causing the collision, and therefore handed him a ten place grid penalty for the next race in Bahrain.

iSport International driver Ericsson, considered to be amongst the title favourites for what is his third season in the category, had a bad start to his weekend when he could only qualify 20th. In the feature race he finished 13th, and was up to tenth at the time of the Valsecchi incident.

On Twitter the Swede said that he and the team were 'very disappointed' with the decision.

Ricardo Teixeira was another driver to be penalised in the sprint race, and was given a 1,000 Euros fine and a reprimand for rejoining the track in an unsafe manner.