Twelve post-race penalties mix up Austrian GP result

Nearly five hours after the chequered flag, the FIA confirmed the final result of the Austrian Grand Prix after 12 additional post-race penalties were issued for track-limits violations.

Eight drivers were hit with time penalties — some multiple times — meaning the race result had to be reissued to reflect the changes in position.

However, the top three were not affected, meaning Max Verstappen retained his seventh victory of the season ahead of Charles Leclerc in second and Sergio Perez in third.

Carlos Sainz, who received a 10-second penalty, dropped from fourth place to sixth in the final classification, while Lewis Hamilton dropped from seventh place to eighth and Pierre Gasly lost ninth position to Lance Stroll and finished 10th.

All the other penalties were applied to drivers outside the points.

The potential for additional penalties, which were applied on top of the eight penalties issued during and immediately after the race, came to light after Aston Martin protested the result in the belief that some track limits violations had gone unpenalised.

The stewards accepted the protest and revealed the FIA was already working through a total of 1,200 possible transgressions to determine whether further penalties were necessary.

It was not until 9:30 p.m. local time that the full list of penalties was revealed.

Under F1’s regulations, three track-limits infringements results in a warning, with a fourth resulting in a five-second penalty and a fifth resulting in a 10-second penalty. Once a 10-second penalty has been issued, the process is reset for that driver and the counting of infringements restarts.

Such a large number of track limits violations in one race is unprecedented, with all the additional penalties resulting from drivers running wide in either Turns 9 or 10 at the end of the Red Bull Ring lap.

In their statement issuing the penalties, the stewards “very strongly recommend that a solution be found to the track limits situation at this circuit.”

The situation, which also saw 47 laps deleted in Friday’s qualifying session for track-limits violations, received criticism over the weekend.

“The track limits thing needs to be looked at because it makes us look a little bit amateurish,” Red Bull team boss Christian Horner told Sky Sports television.

“With so many drivers breaking those limits it’s just too easy. I think it’s something that needs to be looked at here for next year. Either the kerbs or maybe a bit of gravel on the other side of the kerb could just tidy that up.”

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff added: “For the fans, spectators, teams and drivers it is super frustrating to keep the penalties coming.

“There is only two solutions, either you come back to sausage kerbs [large raised kerbs beyond the track limits] that break the drivers and the cars but then no one should complain, or you remove them all and let them race the fastest line — this is what Niki Lauda always said.

“You may come close to some of the guard rails, but we need to find a solution in the interest of the track, which is a super track and a traditional track, and all the stakeholders.

“We want to achieve the same thing: a spectacular race that is not influenced by penalties unless they are given for the right reasons because the rules exist.”

In a statement on Sunday, the FIA said it will suggest the Red Bull Ring adds a gravel trap beyond Turns 9 and 10 — a solution that has previously been rejected because it could prove dangerous for motorcycle racing.

“In order to address the issue for future events we will renew our recommendation to the circuit to add a gravel trap at the exit of turns 9 and 10,” an FIA spokesperson said. “We note that while this is not a straightforward solution in relation to other series that race here, it has proved to be very effective at other corners and circuits with similar issues.”

The additional penalties were awarded as follows:

Sainz: 10-second penalty, drops from fourth place to sixth
Hamilton: 10-second penalty, drops from seventh place to eighth
Gasly: 10-second penalty, drops from ninth place to 10th
Alex Albon: 10-second penalty, keeps 11th place
Esteban Ocon: 30-second penalty (two five-second penalties and two 10-second penalties), drops from 12th place to 14th
Logan Sargeant: 10-second penalty, keeps 13th place
Nyck de Vries: 15-second penalty (one five-second penalty and one 10-second penalty), drops from 15th place to 17th
Yuki Tsunoda: five-second penalty, drops from 18th place to 19th

Final results

1. Max Verstappen, Red Bull, 1:25:33.607
2. Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, +5.155s
3. Sergio Perez, Red Bull, +17.888s
4. Lance Norris, McLaren, +26.327s
5. Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin, +30.317s
6. Carlos Sainz, Ferrari, +31.377s*
7. George Russell, Mercedes, +48.403s
8. Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, +49.196s*
9. Lance Stroll, Aston Martin, +59.043s
10. Pierre Gasly, Alpine, +67.677s*
11. Alex Albon, Williams, +79.767s*
12. Zhou Guanyu, Alfa Romeo, +1 lap
13. Logan Sargeant, Williams, +1 lap*
14. Esteban Ocon, Alpine, +1 lap*
15. Valtteri Bottas, Alfa Romeo, +1 lap
16. Oscar Piastri, McLaren, +1 lap
17. Nyck de Vries, AlphaTauri, +1 lap*
18. Kevin Magnussen, Haas, +1 lap*
19. Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri, +1 lap*
Not classified: Nico Hulkenberg

* Denotes a penalty applied.