Hamilton Will Not Receive Grid Penalty in Korea
Although he changed his gearbox prior to the Suzuka qualifying session, Hamilton experienced a problem with his 3rd gear during the race, meaning that the British team would have to use yet another one in the upcoming race weekend.
Although fears were raised over the possibility of the FIA enforcing another 5-place grid penalty for Ham once a new gearbox will be used, Whitmarsh looked it up in the rulebook and confirmed this will not be the case. Instead, he revealed his team has one spare gearbox change left for Hamilton.
“We've taken the penalty for this weekend so we have a free gearbox change for the next race. Lewis will not face a second successive five-place grid penalty,” said the McLaren boss in a statement on Friday.
“The gearbox regulations were framed to ensure teams weren't penalized twice for the same gearbox issue, so Lewis will go into the weekend without risk of further penalty,” added Whitmarsh.
As a consequence of his gearbox problem, Hamilton lost a place in the Japanese GP, finishing the race in 5th place (after starting from 8th place).