Grosjean handed 20-place Abu Dhabi grid penalty


Romain Grosjean has been handed a twenty-place grid drop penalty for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix after his Lotus F1 Team decided to fix a sixth Renault power unit to his car.

The Frenchman’s E22 will have a new internal combustion engine, turbocharger and MGU-H unit for the race, and with teams limited to five per car per season, the Frenchman will therefore take the grid penalty.

With the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix being the last event of the year, Grosjean will most likely have to serve some of his penalty as a time penalty during the race, with the Frenchman having only made into Q3 once in 2014.

A FIA decree has stated that he will serve a five-second penalty for up to five un-served places, a ten-second penalty for between six and ten places, or a drive-through penalty if between eleven and twenty places remain un-served.

If he receives another penalty before the start of the race, it is possible that the Frenchman will have to serve a ten-second stop and go penalty during the race.

Grosjean is determined to start from the grid however, unlike Sebastian Vettel back in the United States Grand Prix, when the Red Bull driver opted to start from the pit lane.

“It’s not ideal, but if it’s a new one [power unit] it’s 100 per cent fresh and there are quite a lot of long straights here so it may help us a little bit,” said Grosjean.

Grosjean sat out first practice in Abu Dhabi to allow Esteban Ocon his first opportunity to drive during an F1 weekend, weeks after winning the FIA European Formula 3 Championship.