Ferrari Formula 1 driver Carlos Sainz Jr is under investigation by the FIA for ‘helping shut his father’s door’ on the Dakar Rally
Ferrari Formula 1 driver Carlos Sainz Jr has reported to the FIA for closing the door of his father’s car during the Dakar Rally.
Sainz Jr. follows his father’s progress in Saudi rally legend as Carlos Sainz Snr, aged 60, seeks his fourth victory in the grueling event.
Sainz Jr, an F1 star and winner of last year’s Silverstone race, was spotted visiting his father’s house in the Jeddah desert, but got a little too close in the eyes of an FIA delegate.
An iconic photo was taken of Sainz Jr. while repairing his father and Audi Sport teammate Lucas Cruz their Audi RS Q E-Tron E2 during the race’s third leg.
The image quickly went viral and a video of Sainz Jr. was later posted. standing next to the two drivers as they repaired their car’s left rear suspension, something only they are allowed to do for a while. phase.
After the drivers return to their cockpits, the 28-year-old F1 star is seen helping close his father’s car door, which was a bit of a struggle.
And a delegate reported the incident saying it violated Rule 49.2.1 which states that “team personnel or team transport (including helicopters) is not permitted within one kilometer of their competitor’s vehicle”.
Despite the caveats to the rule, the Sainzes successfully argued that Carlos “is not a member of the team” and that his actions were “not an initiative of the team or the driver”.
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The FIA stewards accepted the explanation, saying there was “no evidence to substantiate a breach of the regulations in a legal sense”, but concluded with a warning.
“In the name of popularizing motor racing and increasing prestige, participants are encouraged to avoid any situation that could raise doubts,” they wrote.
“The fact that very famous people in motorsport are an example for everyone is very important.
“Because the relationship between father and son would be very difficult to consider as completely independent.
“In the opinion of the stewards, a very good example to avoid dubious situations is when participants in the FIA championships ask even completely independent people not to approach the crew members of this crew’s car, if this could raise doubts about the possible acquisition of an unfair advantage.
Sainz Sr., two-time world rally champion, is contesting his 17th Dakar rally this year in pursuit of his fourth title.
Rear suspension damage cost the Audi team more than half an hour in their pursuit of leader Nasser Al-Attiyah.
The Dakar Rally is recognized as one of the most dangerous and prestigious events in motorsport and the current edition will run from December 31st to January 15th.
The marathon got its name because it finished in Senegal’s capital, but now only takes place in the Middle East after ten years in South America.
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