|© AP Photo/Manu Fernandez
Felipe Massa and Esteban Gutierrez each got a three-place grid penalty for the Spanish Grand Prix for impeding drivers during the qualifying session on Saturday.
Massa had qualified sixth but will now drop to ninth as the Ferrari driver was found guilty of holding the Red Bull of Mark Webber in Q2. The Australian, who was in P8, will now gain a place as a result.
"It was not my intention to get in his way and in all honesty, I can’t recall having affected his qualifying," Massa said. "When I saw him in the mirrors, I thought I’d get through the corner before letting him by, which was the only course of action at such a narrow point. On top of that, he was on worn tyres at the time and I don’t think he was doing a quick lap."
Webber acknowledged that the incident wasn't deliberate and sympathised with the Ferrari driver.
“Felipe doesn't do that on purpose, maybe the radio communication wasn't good for his car," the Red Bull driver was quoted saying by Autosport. "It is a frustrating thing for any of us top guys because we're always generally very good with each other."
Gutierrez was 16th but will now start 19th as he came in the way of Lotus’ Kimi Raikkonen during Q1 at the last chicane.
“Qualifying was tricky," said Gutierrez referring to the struggle with his Sauber. "I’m not satisfied, as I want to be further in front."