Tom Dillmann felt the penalty handed out to Louis Deletraz in race one at the Circuito de Jerez on Saturday was justified after the two drivers clashed.
The AVF by Adrian Vallés driver was on the receiving end of a turn nine move by the Fortec Motorsports driver while the two battled for fourth position, spinning Dillmann into the gravel trap and into retirement, while Deletraz was handed a retrospective ten-second penalty for the incident that relegated him out of the points.
Dillmann laid the blame on the incident firmly in the hands of his Swiss rival, and felt Deletraz did not slow sufficiently in the yellow flag zone at turn eight, where Giuseppe Cipriani had spun into the gravel trap.
“There was a yellow flag at Turn 8, as there was a crane next to the track in the gravel,” said Dillmann on Autosport. “Earlier in the lap, [Deletraz] had already tried to pass at the hairpin, but was too late on the brakes and I was able to re-pass when he ran wide on the exit.
“Entering Turn 8, I was two car lengths ahead. I backed off because of the yellow, like you are supposed to do, and on the exit he was on my gearbox.
“Then I braked late for Turn 9. He tried to brake later, and touched my rear-right wheel with his front-left. I don’t blame him for trying to overtake, but I think they [the officials] blamed him more for gaining time on the yellows, which was not fair.”
Dillmann’s weekend did not massively improve on Sunday when he finished down in eighth with Deletraz second, meaning the AVF driver relinquishes the championship lead to his rival, and now sits three points down with two races remaining.