Verstappen and Leclerc among six taking grid penalties in Belgium

Andy Hone/Motorsport Images

Verstappen and Leclerc among six taking grid penalties in Belgium

Formula 1

Verstappen and Leclerc among six taking grid penalties in Belgium

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Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc are among six drivers to get large grid penalties at the Belgian Grand Prix for power unit and gearbox components.

On the return from the mid-season break, multiple teams have opted to take grid drops at Spa-Francorchamps as it is a track where you can traditionally overtake. The top two in the championship will both start at the back of the grid as a result of picking up more than 20 positions of penalties, with Verstappen taking a new internal combustion engine (ICE), turbocharger, MGU-H and MGU-K.

Leclerc only has a new MGU-K and energy store, but exceeding gearbox limits also takes him over the threshold for a back-of-the-grid start.

Joining them with the same penalty are Lando Norris, Esteban Ocon, Valtteri Bottas and Mick Schumacher, meaning that as it stands the drivers will fill positions 15-20 on the grid on Sunday. The starting order among all six will be defined by the qualifying result.

The timing of so many penalties at once has the potential to limit the damage somewhat for both Verstappen and Leclerc, but it also opens the door for a strong weekend for Mercedes, after George Russell’s pole position at the last race in Hungary.

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