Sebastian Vettel: Ferrari fail to overturn Mexican Grand Prix penalty

Sebastian Vettel
Sebastian Vettel celebrates on the podium - only to be denied his third-place finish

Ferrari have failed to overturn the penalty given to Sebastian Vettel at the Mexican Grand Prix.

The team claimed "new evidence" brought into question the decision to penalise the German for dangerous driving while battling Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo.

But after hearing the evidence, race stewards said "no new element" existed.

Vettel finished fourth in Mexico and was promoted to third before being demoted to fifth, behind Ricciardo and Red Bull team-mate Max Verstappen.

Vettel, a four-time world champion, was penalised for a dangerous move while braking as Australian Ricciardo attempted to overtake.

Dutch teenager Verstappen was also punished after the race, which took place on 30 October.

He had overtaken Vettel by bypassing a chicane but was not asked to give up the position by the race director.

It was only after the race that he was penalised, demoted from third.

Ferrari were represented at Friday's hearing by engineering director Jock Clear.

He claimed there were two aspects of new evidence that had not been considered by race stewards when they gave Vettel his penalty.

These were:

  • That the race director had the power to instruct Verstappen to give back the position to Vettel but had not.
  • That GPS data constituted a "new element".

The stewards acknowledged the race director had "absolute authority" to tell a driver to hand over position, but said he was not under an obligation to do so.

As for the GPS data, Clear conceded it did not contradict other evidence stewards had considered when deciding Vettel had performed an illegal move.