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Why Leclerc wasn't punished like Verstappen for unsafe release

Why Leclerc wasn't punished like Verstappen for unsafe release

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Why Leclerc wasn't punished like Verstappen for unsafe release

Why Leclerc wasn't punished like Verstappen for unsafe release

FIA race director Michael Masi has explained how Charles Leclerc avoided punishment despite being released into the path of Romain Grosjean in the pit-lane during the German Grand Prix.

Grosjean had to slam on the brakes after Leclerc was freed into his path, with a chaotic pit-lane full of drivers changing tyres.

Ferrari were given a $5,000 fine, which raised significant discussion, given Max Verstappen had been given a five-second penalty for a similar incident with Valtteri Bottas at the Monaco Grand Prix, dropping the Dutchman from second to fourth.

However, Masi pointed out a key difference between the incidents to explain the differing punishments.

"I'm very much a firm believer, and the teams all agree, that you treat each case on its own merits," Masi said.

"As much as you can try and group things, generally, you have to treat each and every circumstance that comes up and judge it.

"So yeah, I think in the end that's pretty straightforward.

"In Monaco, for clarification, it was labelled an unsafe release, but it was actually for causing a collision in the pit lane.

"So that's why that was different to Germany, which was clearly an unsafe release.

"Part of the discussion we had with team managers the other day, knowing the conditions could be changeable, and also taking into account everyone coming into the pit lane to do tyres at the same time is going to be a factor, it is still quite clearly consistent with the previous penalties.

"The fact that every other team thereafter was out didn't, even though the fast lane is as wide as it is, didn't allow what we saw at Silverstone with the car driving on the painted area."

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