Katherine Legge handed grid penalty for I-PACE eTROPHY New York season finale
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing's Katherine Legge has been handed a three-place grid penalty for the final race weekend of the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY's inaugural season of competition.
In the Berlin round which marked the eighth race of the season, the Briton struggled for pace over the course of the weekend, qualifying in ninth place, 0.852s slower than fellow Pro driver Caca Bueno who claimed pole position.
Starting from the fifth row of the grid, it was vital for Legge to make up lost ground in the race, however, at the end of the first lap of the 25-minute + 1 lap affair, the British racer made a mistake in Turn 9.
Overtaking Celia Martin, Legge outbroke herself, clipping the right rear of Saudi Racing's Bandar Alesayi to pitch the driver into a spin.
Spinning in the right-hand hairpin, Alesayi was, in turn, collected by team-mate Ahmed Bin-Khanen, with this resulting in the driver's eventual retirement in a race in which he could have sealed the Pro-Am championship title.
A post-race investigation into the incident found that Legge was in breach of Article 4.2.1 of the 2018-2019 Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy Sporting Regulations:
"The Stewards consider that the Driver Katherine Legge is responsible of causing a collision," read a bulletin issued by the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY. "This decision has been taken in accordance with Art. 4.2.4d) of the 2018-2019 Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy Sporting Regulations."
While Legge was handed a grid drop for New York City, Team China Racing's Yaqi Zhang received a £500 fine when the Chinese racer's representative was not available to be contacted after post-qualifying scrutineering.
"The Competitor’s Representative has been officially summoned by the Stewards on 24th May 2019 at 19:00 concerning an alleged breach of Art. 5.17.2 of the 2018-2019 Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy Technical Regulations," read a second statement. "Unfortunately the Competitor’s Representative had already left the circuit without authorization and furthermore it was not possible to reach him neither by phone nor by text message. Therefore the Stewards have decided that the Competitor has to be fined 500GBP."
After coming under investigation post-race, Pro-Am runner-up Martin was handed a formal reprimand in response to her late-race incident with Ziyi Zhang when the pair made contact with one another in Turns 1 and 2 in the final stages of the race, with it being found that the French racer pushed the Team China driver off the racing line.
The Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY's inaugural season will conclude in New York City on July 15, with the fully-electric production car series closing its 2018/19 campaign alongside the ABB FIA Formula E Championship with a double-header event in the Big Apple.