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Mercedes rule out appeal against Schumacher penalty

Michael Schumacher overtakes Fernando Alonso

Schumacher sneaks past Alonso on last corner

Mercedes have decided not to appeal against the 20-second penalty which dropped Michael Schumacher from sixth to 12th place at the Monaco Grand Prix.

Schumacher was penalised for overtaking Fernando Alonso under a safety car at the end of the final lap.

"Whilst we cannot be happy with the outcome, we are pleased the FIA recognised the reasons for our interpretation," said Mercedes.

"In the best interests of the sport, Mercedes will not submit an appeal."

The incident happened after the safety car, which came out following an incident involving the Lotus of Jarno Trulli and Hispania Racing's Karun Chandhok, pulled into the pits at the end of the race.

Mercedes advised Schumacher that once the safety car had pulled in, he was free to race from the safety car line to the finish line - a distance of a few hundred metres.

Schumacher, a seven-time world champion, then passed Ferrari's Alonso on his way out of Rascasse and into Anthony Noghes - the final corner.

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But race stewards ruled the move breached the rules as the race should have been completed under safety car conditions.

Article 40.13 of the Formula 1 sporting regulations states: "If the race ends while the safety car is deployed it will enter the pit lane at the end of the last lap and the cars will take the chequered flag as normal without overtaking."

The penalty cost Schumacher eight much-needed championship points and Mercedes initially indicated that they would contest the decision of the FIA, the sport's governing body.

The German lies ninth in the drivers' standings, 34 points behind team-mate Nico Rosberg in eighth and 56 behind the Red Bull pair of leaders Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel.

"We believed that the combination of the race control messages and the green flags and lights shown by the marshals after safety car line one indicated that the race was not finishing under the safety car and all drivers were free to race," explained Mercedes.

"This opinion appears to have been shared by the majority of the teams with cars in the top 10 positions who also gave their drivers instructions to race to the finish line."

Alonso and his Ferrari team-mate Felipe Massa insist that they had been told to stay in position at the time of the incident.

The four race stewards who made the decision included Schumacher's old rival Damon Hill, with whom the German famously clashed on his way to his first world title in 1994.

"Mercedes would like to emphasise that we fully support the inclusion of past drivers on the stewards panel and are completely satisfied that the Monaco Grand Prix stewards acted professionally, impartially and properly in this matter," added the team's statement.



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Monaco Grand Prix

RaceLast updated: 15 Nov 2012 12:35 UK
Position Country Driver Race Time
1 australia M Webber 1:50:13.355
2 germany S Vettel 1:50:13.803
3 poland R Kubica 1:50:15.030
4 brazil F Massa 1:50:16.021
5 great britain L Hamilton 1:50:17.718
6 spain F Alonso 1:50:19.696
7 germany N Rosberg 1:50:20.006
8 germany A Sutil 1:50:20.325
9 italy V Liuzzi 1:50:20.660
10 switzerland S Buemi 1:50:21.554


see also
Schumacher hit by Monaco penalty
16 May 10 |  Formula 1
Webber wins crash-strewn Monaco
16 May 10 |  Formula 1
Webber plays down F1 title talk
16 May 10 |  Formula 1
Kubica 'proud' of Monaco podium
16 May 10 |  Formula 1
Monaco GP as it happened
16 May 10 |  Formula 1
Monaco Grand Prix photos
16 May 10 |  Formula 1
Button accuses Massa of blocking
15 May 10 |  Formula 1


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