Piquet fumes at lenient di Grassi penalty


2016/2017 FIA Formula E Championship. Buenos Aires ePrix, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Saturday 18 February 2017. Photo: Zak Mauger/LAT/Formula E ref: Digital Image _L0U8320

Nelson Piquet Jr has bemoaned the lack of consistency from race officials after he believed Lucas di Grassi was given a lenient penalty for an unsafe release during the Buenos Aires ePrix.

The twisty pit lane at the Argentinian track caused some problems for teams in knowing where to release their drivers, and after his stop di Grassi emerged only marginally in front of Piquet.

Piquet was forced to brake to avoid contact, which in previous races had led to drive-throughs being issued, or time penalties if the decision was taken after the race.

This would have led to di Grassi being demoted behind his fellow Brazilian, but instead the race officials issued a reprimand and a €1,500 fine.

This in Piquet’s view was unfair, and he felt that given the resources available, it shouldn’t be hard for more consistent penalties to be handed out.

Speaking to Autosport he said, “They don’t have any consistency with what they are doing.

“They say every case is its own, but that’s not the case – whatever the situation, unsafe release is an unsafe release.

“It is really frustrating – I wish it was more black and white instead of 90% grey, a little black, a little white.

“I don’t know how they can resolve this but they should, they have enough people, enough cameras and GPS in all the cars.”

The decision meant that di Grassi kept his fifteen points for the race, and with it second place in the driver’s championship.