Pace-setter Merhi docked ten grid places
17 November 2011 – Roberto Merhi, the provisional pole position winner ahead of the Macau Grand Prix Qualifying Race, has been handed a grid drop of ten places for two separate incidents in Friday’s qualifying session. The Spaniard is one of eight drivers to be penalised after a dramatic and wet day of track action at the renowned venue.
Prema driver Merhi, the 2011 F3 Euro Series Champion, dominated Qualifying 1, only to crash into Félix Rosenqvist’s car under braking for the notorious Lisboa corner; this earned him a seven-place penalty, which is placed on top of a three-place drop for crossing the pit lane exit line earlier in the session.
Also crossing the pit exit line, and duly earning three-place penalties, were the following drivers: Marko Asmer, Carlos Munoz, the aforementioned Rosenqvist, Carlos Sainz Jr. and Laurens Vanthoor. Hironobu Yasuda takes a six-place fall after committing the illegality twice.
Rosenqvist also receives a double penalty and is relegated to the back of the grid for both overtaking under yellow flags and contacting with a fellow competitor. Another man falling to the back row is Kevin Magnussen, who appeared to ignore yellow flags and crashed into Rosenqvist’s car while the Swede was attempting to climb out.
Macau’s second practice session begins at 11am local time (GMT +8) on Friday