Renault’s Daniel Ricciardo has been disqualified from Singapore GP qualifying for a technical infringement.
Ricciardo had qualified eighth but will now start from the back of the field in Sunday’s race, which begins at 1.10pm.
Team-mate Nico Hulkenberg takes over eighth and McLaren’s Lando Norris moves into ninth, while Alfa Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi gains the final top-10 starting slot.
- How did Leclerc, Ferrari steal show?
- Hamilton shocked by Ferrari surge
Ricciardo’s Renault car was found to have contravened the regulation governing how much power can be emitted by the MGU-K element of the engine. The RS19 was found to have exceeded 120kW during Q1.
The issue was referred to the stewards by FIA technical delegate Jo Bauer after qualifying and, after speaking to Renault representatives into the early hours of Sunday morning at F1’s night race, stewards announced just before 3am local time that they had determined a breach had taken place “beyond any doubt”.
7:23 Anthony Davidson is joined by Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo for a SkyPad special, as the old team-mates reminisce and analyse their performances in Friday’s practice sessions at the Singapore GP.
How Renault fell foul of F1’s rules
Although Renault argued that Ricciardo’s car had barely gone over the 120kW limit on what proved to be the Australian’s second-fastest lap of Q1, stewards said that was not a sufficient defence against the regulations.
‘The team’s defense rested on two points. First, that the excess was very small and offered no measurable benefit. Second, that the excess occurred during the second fastest lap during Q1,’ read the stewards’ verdict.
‘The team explained to the Stewards how they believe the excess occurred, however the Stewards consider this information to be confidential to the team, and not relevant to this decision.
‘Notwithstanding the team’s arguments, the Stewards take note of the very clear wording of Article 1.2.2 ISC, which states that “If an Automobile is found not to comply with the applicable technical regulations, it shall be no defense to claim that no performance advantage was obtained”.
‘In coming to this decision the Stewards referred to longstanding precedents regarding technical infringements and the penalty which has been consistently applied is disqualification, and which does not consider when or if an advantage was gained.’
Stewards have granted Ricciardo permission to start the race from 20th and last place.
The Australian’s demotion is a blow to Renault’s hopes in their battle this weekend with McLaren, their rivals for fourth place in the Constructors’ Championship. Renault’s drivers had split Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris on the grid, but Ricciardo now has his work cut out to score points on one of the hardest circuits on which to overtake.
Provisional Singapore GP grid
1. Charles Leclerc, Ferrari
2. Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes
3. Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari
4. Max Verstappen, Red Bull
5. Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes
6. Alex Albon, Red Bull
7. Carlos Sainz, McLaren
8. Nico Hulkenberg, Renault
9. Lando Norris, McLaren
10. Antonio Giovinazzi, Alfa Romeo
11. Pierre Gasly, Toro Rosso
12. Kimi Raikkonen, Alfa Romeo
13. Kevin Magnussen, Haas
14. Daniil Kvyat, Toro Rosso
15. Sergio Perez, Racing Point*
16. Lance Stroll, Racing Point
17. Romain Grosjean, Haas
18. George Russell, Williams
19. Robert Kubica, Williams
20. Daniel Ricciardo, Renault**