Formula One championship leader Max Verstappen is set to start the Russian Grand Prix from behind the grid after being selected to install a new power unit in his Red Bull team Dutchman’s car.
The 2ced-year-old, who led Mercedes rival Lewis Hamilton by five points overall, already carries a three-place grid penalty after a clash with Britain at the Italian Grand Prix that kept both drivers out of the race.
Drivers are not allowed more than three power units per season and grid penalties begin if they exceed the allocation.
Worstapen, who have won seven of Hamilton’s four races this year, can still reduce any damage to his title lead in Sunday’s race, surpassing the Sochi circuit is relatively easy.
He took a similar penalty in the 2018 Russian race but finished 19th in the grid and fifth through the field.
However, an engine penalty smoothed Hamilton’s 100th victory.
His Mercedes team has been unbeaten in Russia since joining the calendar in 2011 and was predicted in the opening practice session on Friday led by Hamilton led by Valteri Botas.


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