until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League


Bastianini ignored Barcelona MotoGP penalties in protest

by Valentin Khorounzhiy
2 min read

until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

Ducati MotoGP rider Enea Bastianini has sensationally admitted that he ignored his Catalan Grand Prix penalty as a form of protest against the stewarding - and believes his team and management are behind his decision.

Bastianini was assessed a long-lap penalty after going off-track in the Barcelona circuit's Turn 1-2 sequence while fighting Alex Marquez for eighth position.

He lost no time in the sector because the timing loop delineating the end of the first sector is right on exit of Turn 2 - but his overall laptime was five tenths off his previous one.

The rules, however, require riders to give up a second when they cut the track at Turn 2 (which is a change of direction from Turn 1) - but Bastianini objected to being punished for being taken off-track by a lunge from Marquez, which he described as "on the limit", rather than a consequence of a mistake of his own.

He did not serve the long-lap penalty, nor the upgraded double long-lap penalty, nor the resulting ride-through, which was converted into a 32-second penalty at the flag and demoted him from ninth out of the points.

Asked by media post-race whether he did not get the message on his dashboard, Bastianini immediately fronted up: "No, the dashboard was too clear. But I didn't agree with the dashboard.

"I overtook Alex in the straight, and when we arrived on the braking, I braked very, very late, and he braked later than me, and pushed me out, no? On the kerbs. And for me it was impossible to remain with the brake [applied].

"The only solution was to cut the chicane. It was possible also to come back [to the track] but where? On the kerb of Turn 2? No. Also I lost time, because I followed the line of the long lap."

Bastianini said he was waiting for Marquez up ahead to be told to drop a position, and then simply refused to accept it when it was he who received a penalty instead.

"I know. It's not the correct choice. But we have to do something," he said.

"Because nothing changes. Every race there is something to explain with the stewards and it was not correct for me."

Bastianini visited the stewards alongside Ducati boss Davide Tardozzi post-race, and claimed that they reconsidered their view of the incident - albeit also, somewhat in contradiction, suggested that his bid to have the penalty rescinded fell on deaf ears because he had not given up the required time.

He said the team was backing him: "Davide was with me, and you know, also for all the team, all the team agreed with my decision, understand what happened. Well, it's like this."

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