British GP: Daniel Ricciardo set for five-place grid penalty
First Bottas, now Ricciardo as gearbox rules start to bite; Third such punishment for a leading driver in the space of a week
By Pete Gill and Jonathan Green at Silverstone
Last Updated: 18/07/17 12:05pm
Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo is set to be demoted five grid places at the British GP after an unscheduled gearbox change.
The rules states that a gearbox must complete six races with any deviation triggering an automatic sanction.
As Ricciardo's unit had not already completed six consecutive events, the change means the Australian can qualify no higher than sixth at Silverstone even if he were to land pole.
It is the second such penalty to be triggered this weekend - and the third in a week - after Mercedes also confirmed after Friday practice Valtteri Bottas would be sent back five places for another unscheduled gearbox change.
Seven days ago in Austria, Lewis Hamilton was sent back five positions for an identical infringement.
It is also the second time the Australian has been hit by a grid penalty for an unplanned gearbox change this season, having also suffered a demotion at his home grand prix in March.
Ricciardo had received a new gearbox at last month in Baku, meaning it should have lasted until September's Singapore GP.
Ricciardo has finished on the podium in each of the last five races, including winning in Azerbaijan, but will now start Sunday's grand prix on the back foot.
When's the British GP on Sky?
All the TV times and ways to watch this weekend's race live on Sky F1.
Do the rules need changing?
Following Hamilton's grid demotion at the Red Bull Ring, Sky F1 pundit Martin Brundle had this to say in his post-race column for Sky Sports:
'It's an age-old debate but it's just not right for drivers to be punished in these circumstances.
'I fully understand why the rule is there: it prevents the rich teams from introducing new engines and gearboxes for every race. But there has to be a way to stop the teams from doing that without hurting the drivers.
'It's important to define the scenarios we're talking about. If a driver crashes out in a race, or the car fails in a race, it's impossible to differentiate between driver and team. But for a technical fault like this, occurring between races, a team should be allowed to prepare a healthy car without the driver suffering pain at the next event.
'The solution is something like a constructors' points penalty if they are currently in the top three in the championship.'
Comment below to get involved in the debate, but please adhere to our House Rules. If you wish to report any comment, simply click on the down arrow next to the offending comment and click 'Report'.