Sebastian Vettel gets his P2 back, for now, thanks to Aston Martin's appeal

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Second placed Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Aston Martin F1 Team celebrates on the podium during the F1 Grand Prix of Hungary at Hungaroring on August 01, 2021 in Budapest, Hungary.
Second placed Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Aston Martin F1 Team celebrates on the podium during the F1 Grand Prix of Hungary at Hungaroring on August 01, 2021 in Budapest, Hungary.
Photo by Lars Baron

After an apparent fuel violation, Sebastian Vettel was stripped of his P2 finish in Hungary, but Aston Martin's appeal has seen his P2 finish reinstated for now.

It was a chaotic Sunday at the Hungaroring, with Valtteri Bottas triggering a crash towards the front, which wiped out himself, Lando Norris, and Sergio Perez while also causing significant damage to Max Verstappen's Red Bull.

There was further chaos behind this batch of drivers as Vettel's Aston Martin teammate Lance Stroll eliminated Charles Leclerc at the first corner, earning himself a five-place grid penalty for the Belgian Grand Prix.

However, the carnage proved highly beneficial for Vettel, who spent most of the Hungarian Grand Prix harrying race leader Esteban Ocon.

READ | Aston Martin to appeal Vettel disqualification from Hungarian GP

Ultimately the Frenchman held firm, leaving Vettel to settle for what he thought was his second P2 finish of the season.

However, the stewards had other plans.

The regulations state that a driver must have one litre of fuel remaining in the tank at the end of a race for testing, and since there was not a litre left in Vettel's AMR21, that P2 vanished into thin air.

"After the race, it was not possible to take a one-litre sample of fuel from car 5," read the stewards' report.

"The team was given several opportunities to attempt to remove the required amount of fuel from the tank; however, it was only possible to pump 0.3 litres out.

"During the hearing in the presence of the FIA Technical Delegate and the FIA Technical Director, the team principal of Aston Martin stated that there must be 1.44 litres left in the tank, but they are not able to get it out.

READ | Vettel's second place disqualified, Hamilton now extends championship lead

"The figure is calculated using the FFM or injector model. Given this situation, car No.5 is not in compliance with the requirements of Art. 6.6 FIA Technical Regulations.

"According to Art. 6.2.2 competitors must ensure that a 1.0-litre sample of fuel may be taken from the car at any time. The procedure was followed; however, the 1.0-litre sample of fuel was unable to be taken.

"The stewards determine to apply the standard penalty for technical infringements. Therefore they took into account that it shall be no defence to claim that no performance advantage was obtained."

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