Formula 1’s Race Director Michael Masi says stewards tend to be more lenient in dealing with clashes between team-mates, in explaining why no penalty was issued to Charles Leclerc.
Leclerc hit the back of team-mate Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari at Turn 3 on the opening lap of Formula 1’s Styrian Grand Prix, leaving both cars with terminal damage.
Stewards noted the collision but opted against further investigation.
Leclerc immediately accepted full responsibility and apologised to both Vettel and Ferrari.
Masi confirmed that “stewards looked at it at the time and determined the incident didn’t warrant further investigation” and when asked if a team-mate clash affects the way an incident is viewed he said: “I think it certainly does. Obviously it is taken into account.
“But I don’t know if it is a determining factor either way.
“We’ve seen incidents between two team-mates be penalised before, or otherwise, so I think it has done for many years that it is taken into account.
“To the degree, I think it changes overall depending on the severity of the incident to be honest.”
Stewards went on to investigate Lance Stroll’s overtake on Daniel Ricciardo, in which both went off-track, with the Renault driver labelling the move as “desperate.”
However no further action was taken and the drivers kept their respective positions.
“That one there they had a look at at the time and the stewards’ view from my understanding from a quick chat when they were investigating it is neither driver was predominantly to blame for the incident,” explained Masi.
“It says either a driver need to be wholly or predominantly to blame and in their view neither driver was predominantly to blame so on that basis their view was there was no breach of the regulation and no further action was required.”