Scuderia Ferrari has confirmed that Charles Leclerc will start Sunday’s Russian Grand Prix from the back of the field as the Italian team brings their updated hybrid system to Sochi this weekend.
The Italian team had promised to deliver a significant upgrade on the power unit last month and the result of that is going to be seen with Leclerc this weekend.
Leclerc is the first one to take a grid drop after his engine from the crash caused by Lance Stroll in Hungary was deemed to be unrepairable, leading to an inevitable penalty for the 23-year-old.
Carlos Sainz is expected to also take a penalty in the near future as they try and hunt down McLaren for P3 in the Constructors’ Championship.
''The Russian Grand Prix sees the introduction of a new technical component for Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow: a power unit fitted with an updated hybrid system, the introduction of which was mentioned a few weeks back. Its main purpose is to gain experience for the 2022 car project,'' said Ferrari in a press release.
''A great deal of effort has gone into this, both technically and logistically, and so as to be able to use it as soon as possible, its introduction will be staggered between the drivers. Charles will be the first to have the new hybrid system. This decision is a precautionary measure relating to the potential risk of using the battery pack damaged in his Hungarian GP accident.
''In Sochi, Leclerc will have a brand new power unit and will therefore start from the back of the grid. As to when the updated hybrid system is fitted to Carlos’ car, that will be decided following an evaluation of the right compromise between competitiveness and the impact of the penalty.''