HRT feel the '107 percent' pinch; Narain to miss race

HRT feel the '107 percent' pinch; Narain to miss race

Karthikeyan and his team-mate Vitantonio Liuzzi were ruled ineligible for the race because under the re-introduced “107 percent” rule, they were more than hundred and seven percent slower than session winner Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull.

With the cut-off time set at 1:31.266, Liuzzi could manage only 1:32.978 and Karthikeyan had 1:34.293. Liuzzi missed the cut-off time by around 1.7 seconds while Karthikeyan was slow by over three seconds.

Hispania, which assembled their car here only without running it in pre-season tests, made an exemption request, pleading “exceptional circumstances” for the poor times but race stewards turned it down and excluded the team from the race.

“The stewards received a request to allow (their cars) take part in the race under exceptional circumstances,” read a statement.

“The stewards, having heard the representations of the teams, decide to not allow both to take part.”

The 107 percent rule, which was dropped last year to help the new teams, allows for the stewards to let the team race under exceptional circumstances, which can include setting a suitable time in practice.

Meanwhile, Force India’s Paul di Resta will start 14th on the grid, two places ahead of team-mate Adrian Sutil, who spun his car at the final turn but continued to complete the race.

Sutil spun his car 360 degrees coming out of the final turn, narrowly missing a wall while disappearing in tire smoke, before regaining control and continuing his lap.