Penalty drops Lawson down the F2 grid at Monaco

| Photographer Credit: Red Bull Media

Provisional FIA Formula 2 Championship pole-sitter Liam Lawson has been found guilty of failing to reduce his speed under a single-waved yellow flag on the streets of Monte Carlo. In the dying minutes of Lawson’s Group A qualifying session, Felipe Drugovich stopped on track just before the start/finish line, and both Lawson and DAMS’ Ayumu Iwasa failed to slow.

The Stewards determined that Lawson didn’t noticeably reduce his speed, despite seeing the yellow flags and the yellow light panel stationed at the marshal post – with his mini sector time only 0.012s slower than his best time around there.

As a result, Lawson’s best lap time has been deleted and his second-best time has been used instead – classifying him in P3 of his group. In addition, he has received a five-place grid drop, dropping him down to P11 for tomorrow’s Sprint Race.

Iwasa’s best lap time has also been deleted, demoting him from P2 of his group. Iwasa’s second-best time now sees him classified in P7. With the grid penalty applied, he’ll start the Sprint Race from P20.

Lawson had set the fastest time narrowly beating out Ayumu Iwasa by just 0.059s. Championship leader Felipe Drugovich then hit the wall on his final effort but remained third-quickest in Group A. Meanwhile, ART Grand Prix’s Théo Pourchaire topped Group B with a 1:21.535.

Drugovich had been fighting with Lawson as both traded fastest sector times throughout the first segment. The Brazilian was quickest up until Group A’s final efforts, when a slide out of the final corner on what could have been his fastest lap resulted in contact with the wall. Lawson improved and finished his lap to go fastest in the first group.

A slow burn in Group B followed but a red flag in the final minute prevented any last-gasp improvements. A crash for Van Amersfoort Racing’s Jake Hughes at the Swimming Pool chicane ended the session prematurely. It meant that Pourchaire’s penultimate attempt was good enough for the top spot in the second group.

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