Lewis Hamilton will start the German Grand Prix from 20th on the grid after he was handed a five-place grid penalty following a gearbox change on Sunday morning.
Mercedes changed the gearbox in Hamilton’s car following the 2008 champion’s crash during qualifying, when a brake failure pitched him into a heavy accident at the Sachskurve.
“We can confirm that Lewis Hamilton’s gearbox will be changed for the race owing to accident damage incurred yesterday,” the team announced on Twitter. “The guys are working on the car now to repair everything for the race.”
There was speculation that Hamilton would be forced to start from the pitlane after Mercedes confirmed it planned to swap the brake material on the 29-year-old’s car from the Brembo brakes – one of which failed – to discs produced by Carbone Industrie, which would have seen the team breech the parc ferme conditions.
However, the FIA has cleared Mercedes to make that change without penalty, meaning Hamilton will start 20th on the grid, his lowliest starting position since he was excluded from qualifying at the Spanish Grand Prix for a fuel irregularity.
His Mercedes team-mate and title rival Nico Rosberg will start from pole on home soil.
Image courtesy of Mercedes AMG PETRONAS