SAO PAULO (Reuters) – Brazilian rookie Felipe Nasr was handed a three-place grid penalty on Saturday for impeding compatriot Felipe Massa in qualifying for their home Formula One Grand Prix.
Stewards ruled Nasr, who had been due to start Sunday’s race in 10th place for Sauber, had held up the Williams driver in the first phase of qualifying.
He drops to 13th while Massa, whose last win came at Interlagos in 2008 with Ferrari, will line up in eighth place.
“It was a difficult situation,” said Nasr, who also collected two penalty points. “I was told that all the cars around me were on a slow lap.”
(Writing by Alan Baldwin in London; Editing by Frank Pingue)