The Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team has been handed a €5,000 fine for an unsafe release in the pit lane during the British Grand Prix on Sunday, with the team penalised for allowing Charles Leclerc to leave the box with one of his tyres properly attached to his C37-Ferrari.
The team quickly called for the Monegasque racer to stop the car once they realised their problem, with Leclerc pulling off the track at turn three, causing a very brief yellow flag period.
The problem ended Leclerc’s promising start to the race at Silverstone, which saw him run as high as seventh early on, with points for a fourth consecutive weekend a distinct possibility.
Leclerc was naturally disappointed to be forced out of the race after such a good opening stint, but he had nothing but positives to say about his mechanics, who have recently shown to be amongst the fastest in the pit stops in recent races.
“It is a pity that I had to retire from the race today,” said Leclerc. “The start was exciting and I was able to gain a few positions during the opening laps. The car felt good, our pace was competitive, and things were running smoothly.
“Unfortunately, there was an issue during the pitstop, and we had to retire straight after. In any case, mistakes can happen, and the team has been doing a great job with the pitstops in the past races, so we will move on from this and go into the next race weekend feeling positive about the progress we are making.”