Schumacher handed 20-second penalty, loses points finish, Mercedes to appeal

Michael Schumacher has been demoted from sixth to 12th place

Michael Schumacher has been demoted from sixth to 12th place

Michael Schumacher has been stripped of his sixth-placed finish by the Monaco Grand Prix stewards, who handed him a 20-second penalty for overtaking Fernando Alonso at the final corner of the race.

The result drops Schumacher from sixth place in the original standings to 12th and out of the points.

The verdict promotes Alonso back into sixth ahead of Rosberg, Sutil and Liuzzi. Sebastien Buemi gains a point for tenth place.

Mercedes have said they will appeal the penalty.

The stewards explained their decision as follows:

The Stewards received a report from the Race Director that car Nr 3 – Michael Schumacher overtook car Nr 8 – Fernando Alonso when the Safety Car entered the pit lane at the end of the last lap.

As the overtaking manoeuvre was in breach of Article 40.13 of the 2010 F1 Sporting Regulations, the Stewards decided to impose a drive through penalty but, as it occurred during the last five laps, 20 seconds will be added to the elapsed race time of car Nr 3.

What do you think of Schumacher's penalty?

  • Schumacher was at fault and he should have got a tougher penalty (3%)
  • Schumacher was at fault and the stewards gave the correct penalty (17%)
  • Schumacher was at fault but he should have got a less severe penalty (18%)
  • Schumacher was not at fault and he should have got no penalty at all (62%)

Total Voters: 2,290

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404 comments on Schumacher handed 20-second penalty, loses points finish, Mercedes to appeal

  1. gwenouille said on 16th May 2010, 17:54

    Well, is it written in the rules or not ?
    If it is, then it is fair, albeit quite harsh. I’d say, swapping positions with F Alo would have been too soft though… I really don’t know.

  2. Invoke said on 16th May 2010, 17:55

    Wow people are quick to blame Hill!

    Surely this decision was down to the exact wording of the rules, and the legality of the move in relation to those rules and their initial (supposed) intention, not by an ex racing driver with a grudge!

    • David A said on 16th May 2010, 18:13

      For all we know, Hill might have supported Schumi’s actions but the other two stewards voted against! Very unlikely, but could’ve happened!

  3. mvi said on 16th May 2010, 17:55

    This was the correct decision according to the rules. I agree that it would have been enough to simply put Schumacher behind Alonso in the standings, I’m surprised the stewards cannot be ‘lenient’ and just do that.

  4. I’m not worried, Brawn will send the lawyers and they’ll win, because they’re right.

    Otherwise, the message is “don’t trust in-race messages coming from FIA”

  5. Leftie said on 16th May 2010, 17:56

    This is outrageously ridiculous!

    …In the meantime Mark Webber was handed only a fine for being 10 kph over the pitlane speed limit during a race…

    So does this mean you stewards are now prohibiting overtaking at all times and encouraging driving through pits at full speed if your pockets filled with enough cash?..

    Such a shame.

    • Xanathos said on 16th May 2010, 17:58

      If you look at the time you’ll see that the incident was before the race, when he drove on the grid. A stupid thing to do, but you csn’t punish him in the race for that.

    • sumedh said on 16th May 2010, 17:58

      So, pit-lane speeding is not given a penalty!!!

      But Schumacher is!!

      Damon Hill, you sore sore loser!!

      • sumedh said on 16th May 2010, 18:00

        Ohh, before race!! Didn’t realize that.

        But still, too harsh a penalty for a non-infringement of the rules!!

        Damon Hill, you sore sore loser!!

  6. Dimitris said on 16th May 2010, 17:57

    For people here who claim that the rules have been broken…

    What part of “track clear” and “green flags” don’t you get…?

    If the race finished under SC rules, the track would not have been officially cleared and we would have waved yellows.

    Which we didn’t. Ergo, the race was on.

  7. Bullfrog said on 16th May 2010, 17:59

    What on earth is the new “safety car line” rule trying to achieve? Just get rid of it, straight away.

  8. FIA & F1 stewardship should be ashamed of themselves. The rules & the track situations with regards to the lights were perfectly clear.

    The safety car had come in
    Green lights were on
    Overtake was done after the restart line.

  9. Leftie said on 16th May 2010, 18:00

    My bad, Webber was speeding when he exited the pits to drive onto the starting grid.

  10. Paul A said on 16th May 2010, 18:03

    Nobody seems to have mentioned 40.11: “As the safety car is approaching the pit entry the yellow flags and SC boards will be withdrawn and replaced by waved green flags with green lights at the Line. These will be displayed until the last car crosses the Line.”

    Note “… until the LAST car …” – so green lights do not cancel 40.13 which is absolutely clear about no overtaking.

    • Green flags/lights are only displayed from the last safety car line (or in previous years, the start-finish line), so it still cancels out 40.13 for me.

    • but it does not say when the SC is no longer in, it just says they’ll wave green flags.

    • sumedh said on 16th May 2010, 18:10

      As of 2010, the no overtaking line has been pulled back from the start finish line to the pit-lane line.

      And this finish was NOT A SAFETY CAR FINISH. Teams were clearly told that “Safety car coming in”. If it were a safety car finish, then this message would not have been given to the teams, the safety car lights would have been flashing throughout the time as it entered the pits. This wasn’t such a case though.

      So, it did mean, that we had a 1-corner (200 meter) sprint race finish.

      And Michael beat Fernando in this short race. Why a ridiculous 20-second penalty is beyond me

  11. k2san said on 16th May 2010, 18:05

    I fully understand your point that your not surpised; and normaly I would agree. However if the safety car would still be in effect would then there would not have been green flags now wouldn’t it. I think it’s dubious to punish an overtaking under green flags. What’s in the rule book on this? It’s a conflicting situation which should imho not be punished but immedeately be made clearer to all. Now we have again a situation that causes anger with the critical fans.

    • what they’re saying is, even if there’s green flags, if the rules say no overtaking, then no overtaking. it may make sense to them (and it can make sense, if you think that one rule supersedes the other), but not to me.

      • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 16th May 2010, 18:13

        It is a pretty poor piece of rule-making. Just leave the safety car out in this situation. I don’t see what’s to be gained by bringing it in.

        • David B said on 16th May 2010, 18:14


          Full stop.

        • The leading driver gets to cross the line on his own rather than behind a great hulking Mercedes….makes it nice for the photographers.

          I guess that’s the reasoning behind it. Still seems a bit daft though.

          • Damon said on 16th May 2010, 18:24

            But in such case it’s obvious that the yellows flags should be kept.
            But they were NOT, and the green flags were being waved.

        • I’m surprised the FIA isn’t getting called out for a technical on this. Question is, how insistent will Mercedes be about this? And if so, what avenues are available to them? IIRC, it’s a retro-drive-through, so it may not be appealable in FIA C of A. But we haven’t heard anything from Merc yet.

  12. Tyrone said on 16th May 2010, 18:06

    Just wrong, the safety car was in and the pass completed well after the line (onto the straight in fact) and under green flag conditions. What happened to encouraging overtaking,eh? I think it is just a bitter Damon Hill and I fear the people here saying it was the right decision are just the schumacher haters open your eyes and look at the evidence

    • I know, it’s crazy that people can point to such a ridiculous rule such as 40.13 and claim an open and shut case when the cardinal rule of racing in any series is green flags means have a go.

      The message from FOM was one of SAFETY CAR COMING IN which is used to alert teams that the safety car is being for lack of a better word un-deployed. There was no indication sent to any of the teams or shown on the timing screens that would alert us to the fact that safety car conditions were still to be observed and indeed the marhalls were obsiously not informed.

  13. Bartholomew said on 16th May 2010, 18:10

    Lou made a phone call to Uncle Mo and everything was solved

  14. David B said on 16th May 2010, 18:13

    I’m a fanatic fan of Schumacher.
    But I’m afraid the penalty is fair.

  15. Gurpz said on 16th May 2010, 18:14

    Haha. Of course it’s the Schumacher haters that think the ruling is right. Everyone else knows it’s wrong. The FIA clearly know how to ruin F1 further. The rules just contradict each other. I feel sorry for Michael.

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