Perez hit with grid drop as Russell escapes penalty


Sergio Perez will start Saturday’s Sprint race in Austria from 13th on the grid instead of fourth, after the Mexican had his fastest Q2 time and all his times from Q3 deleted for exceeding track limits.

Perez left the track at Turn 8 on his final flying lap of Q2, in which the Mexican posted a fast enough time to progress to Q3.

Usual procedure would have resulted in the lap in question being deleted; however, as the infringement was only noticed by stewards moments before Q3 started, Perez competed in Q3 and set a time fast enough for fourth on the grid.

But had Perez’s Q2 lap time been correctly deleted, the Mexican would not have progressed through to Q3, and stewards therefore elected not only to delete the offending Q2 lap time, but also all of Perez’s times set during Q3, meaning he will line up 13th on the grid for the Sprint.

Meanwhile, George Russell escaped a penalty for entering the track on foot to return to the pit lane after leaving his stricken Mercedes, with stewards issuing only a warning to the British driver.

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