The last lap dual for ninth place between Carlos Sainz Jnr and Daniil Kvyat resulted in the Spanish driver leaving the track between turns 1 and 2 and re-joining still ahead of the Russian driver.
The incident was investigated by the stewards who ruled that Kvyat, “changed direction three times on the main straight then under braking, touched [Sainz].”
However, the stewards did accept that the first two deviations from the racing line were “not defensive” and declared the matter, “a racing incident”.
The Toro Rosso driver was also cleared of gaining an advantage when he re-joined the track: “The stewards consider that Car 55 [Sainz] was in front at the time it entered the corner and accept the evidence of the driver that he slowed in re-joining the track at turn two and gave room at turn three for Car 26 [Kvyat], in order to avoid gaining a lasting advantage.
“The driver of Car 26 also admitted that he slowed at turn two and gave room for Car 55 to re-join the track.”
Alan Jones was the driver steward this weekend, and he is renown for his view that ‘all is fair in love and war’ out on track.
Sky TV punter and current WEC racing driver Anthony Davidson was of the opinion that Carlos Sainz would receive a penalty, which would see him drop out of the points. There was consensus from Hill, Brundle and Herbert too.
The prospect of punishing a Spanish driver at the Spanish GP appears to have been a bitter pill the stewards did not want to take.
So all in all, a pretty easy time in the headmaster’s office for the Red Bull boys.