Max Verstappen received two reprimands for transgressions during qualifying for Formula 1’s Singapore Grand Prix but has retained his starting spot.
Verstappen and Red Bull struggled throughout the session at Marina Bay and was eliminated in Q2 for the first time this season.
Verstappen faced three post-session investigations for various incidents across Q1 and Q2.
The first involved Verstappen halting at pit exit for 14 seconds, preventing drivers behind from leaving the pit lane, and for this incident he was reprimanded.
Red Bull’s Sporting Director Jonathan Wheatley explained that Verstappen’s decision to halt was negated by Turn 5 due to other cars slowing on their respective out-laps.
“Whilst no obvious advantage was gained by the driver in waiting at the Pit Exit for what is deemed to be an extraordinary long time, the potential for this to negatively impact other drivers warrants a penalty,” read the stewards’ statement.
“Whilst it is noted that the car behind could have overtaken car 1, it is preferable that cars depart the pit exit in an orderly manner.”
Verstappen was cleared of the second investigation, with Williams’ Logan Sargeant affirming that he was not impeded by the reigning World Champion.
Stewards also accepted Verstappen’s explanation “that he was surrounded by many other cars on preparation laps, some of which chose to overtake him on the left and some on the right, and therefore he decided the safest option was for him to drive straight and keep the line, leaving a car width on his right.”
Verstappen received a second reprimand, with Red Bull fined €5,000, for impeding Yuki Tsunoda during Q2.
“Prior to Car 22 passing Car 1, the driver of Car 1 saw the car behind approaching and moved to the left, however quite late,” read the report.
“The team admitted that there was poor communication on its part and that it did not advise its driver until Car 22 was alongside.
“The Stewards reviewed a number of impeding and alleged impeding incident from this current season and consistent with previous decisions in relation to the severity of the breach, impose a penalty of a reprimand on the driver and a fine on the competitor.”
Stewards also noted that the representative of Car 22 chose not to attend the hearing.
Verstappen will consequently start Sunday’s race from 11th position on the grid.
Drivers receive a 10-place grid penalty if they receive three driving-related reprimands during the course of a season.