Maldonado penalised after Spa qualifying for blocking incident
1 September, 2012
Sep.1 (GP247) Incident prone Williams driver Pastor Maldonado was found guilty of blocking German rival Nico Hulkenberg during qualifying for the Belgian GP and demoted from third place on the grid to sixth.
The stewards decision lifted Lotus driver Kimi Räikkönen up to third behind pole sitting winner Jenson Button of McLaren and Sauber’s Kamui Kobayashi.
Speaking to the media immediately after qualifying, Maldonado declared that his qualifying result was a sign that Williams would enjoy a stronger showing in the second half of the 2012 season.
Maldonado has now had five grid penalties this season and was accused by Perez of “not respecting other drivers” after being fined and reprimanded for causing a collision at Silverstone in July.
A winner in Barcelona in May, he then collected three grid penalties in two races – including a 10-place drop for colliding with Perez in Monaco final practice and needing an unscheduled gearbox change that cost five more places.
In Valencia he was given a time penalty for another collision with McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton that cost Williams a precious point. He was also handed a five-place grid penalty in Canada for a gearbox change.
Subbed by AJN.
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