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Schumi exit saves Merc pounds

2012-04-16 07:20

GREAT START, BUT...: Michael Schumacher (right) follows his team mate Nico Rosberg into Turn 1 at the start of the 2012 Chinese F1 GP. The multiple world champ retired on lap 13.

Alan Baldwin

SHANGHAI, China - Race winners Mercedes were fined 5000 euros (R52 000) on Sunday, April 15, 2012, for allowing Michael Schumacher to leave the Chinese Grand Prix pitlane without a front wheel being properly attached in a bungled pitstop.

The fine for an unsafe release would have been greater for the German constructor, for whom the amount was little more than small change, had the seven times Formula One world champion not acted quickly to limit the danger.

Race stewards said in a statement: "The prompt action of the driver, in stopping the car as soon as the problem was noticed, is taken into account in the penalty determination."


Schumacher, who had started on the front row alongside team mate and eventual winner Nico Rosberg, pulled onto the grass and retired on the 13th lap.

The 43-year-old German said: "I felt there was something wrong immediately and especially in turn three when I put pressure on the right side of the car.

"I feel sorry for the guys who always work so hard and give their best. But as we all know, that's part of the game."

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