Kobayashi fined $30,000 for driving into Sauber mechanics

8 July, 2012

Kamui Kobayashi knocks over his mechanicsJul.8 (Reuters) Sauber’s Japanese driver Kamui Kobayashi was fined 25,000 euros ($30,800) after knocking over three of his team’s mechanics when he drove too fast into his pit box, at the British Formula One Grand Prix on Sunday.

Fortunately, the three mechanics suffered only minor injuries but race stewards took a dim view of the incident in which the men were sent flying.

“It was a very dangerous manoeuvre which had potentially serious implications,” they said in their ruling.

Kobayashi swiftly apologised for the accident, “Of course I had to push hard for points, but without doubt I braked too late in the pit lane. “The front wheels locked, I couldn’t control the car, and this is how I overshot the pit box. I am terribly sorry this happened, and I hope the three mechanics I hit get well soon.”

Two of the mechanics from the Swiss team needed treatment at the circuit’s medical centre, one for an injured thumb and the other for cuts and bruises. The third suffered a bruised foot and was treated in the team’s garage.

Sauber endured a miserable afternoon. Kobayashi finished out of the points in 11th place, while Mexican team mate Sergio Perez had to retire after clashing with Williams driver Pastor Maldonado.

Maldonado was fined 10,000 euros for that incident.



  • seb

    he thought he was a bowling ball and the mechanics are the pins!

  • Psych4191

    Whoa, this is bullshit. How can they fine Kobayashi 30 grand, but only fine Maldonado 10? Kobayashi made a small mistake, Maldonado has made big mistake after big mistake. This is some serious bias the FIA’s showing.

  • McLaren Fan

    Kobayashi had no grip on slippery concrete due to not laying rubber down over the race weekend it was an error, for which he is gutted, but crashdonado gets a slap on wrist and 10,000 euro’s for his actions BULL!!!!!!

  • wtf

    Maldonado is vital for Formaula 1 for the money he brings in. Kobayashi is not important

  • james

    common sense says that you keep out of the way of a driver coming in for a pit stop-the pit crew should be fined

  • ride me sideways

    it was a an accident …im sure he did not mean it…no grip on pitlane give the lad a break

  • me

    Come off it guys. Kobayashi could seriously have injured one of the pit crew due to his mistake. Maldonando’s was a fairly low speed bump between two cars with some of the best safety cells in the world. Thats why Kobi got a bigger fine.

  • fools

    this is bull crap. being fined for a honest mistake. Kobi doesnt have a horrible driving record in F-1 and it should be waived not fined because the only loss here is Kobi hitting his mechanics on accident and wasted time etc.

    He clearly sympathetically showed a hand gesture of not hitting his mechanics on purpose just after he hit them in the car.

    Only loss here is to Saubers mechanics with little injury or if none. He should not be fined. However if he hit another team crew member from another team, I can see the difference and why he can be fined. However that was not the case.

    Lets be real people.

  • Hawk

    Guys you miss the point. Safety is very important. Those mechanics were defenseless unlike Sergio who was protected. Maldonado’s was a stupid incident but a racing incident still. We see them every season. Those guys trust the drivers. What will happen now? On hindsight it now seems stupid to trust these drivers. They shd be protected at all costs. It’s like reversing over your toddler in the driveway at home. Would you ever forgive yourself? I know your wife will not. But would it not be a mistake? How costly?

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