Sunday, 30 March 2014 | MYT 9:40 PM
Williams' Bottas first to receive penalty
Williams' Valtteri Bottas received the penalty for impeding Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo during the qualifying sessions. - EPA
SEPANG: Williams driver Valtteri Bottas of Finland became the first Formula One driver to be awarded penalty points following the introduction of the system this season.
Under the new rules, any driver who earns 12 penalty points during a 12-month period will be given a one-race ban.
Bottas was awarded two points for impeding Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo of Australia during qualifying for the Malaysian GP on Saturday.
The Finn was then hit with a three-placed grid penalty yesterday, meaning he started the 56-lap race from 18th position.
Bottas eventually brought his car to eighth place in the race for a back-to-back top-10 finish.
He claimed an impressive fifth placing in Melbourne two weeks ago.
Bottas said he never expected to be penalised and was convinced that he had not hurt Ricciardo’s lap.
“I thought it would be OK and there would be no penalties,” he said.
“He was coming very quickly and it was a bit closer in the last few corners than maybe it should have been.
“It did not cost him anything in the end and I wasn’t sure whether he was on a timed lap or not.”
The stewards ruled that he should have shown more awareness.
“The driver did not pay attention to the approaching car and continued to impede car No. 3 (Ricciardo) through Turns 14 and 15,” said a statement from FIA.