Tom Coronel wasn’t aware about drive-through penalty

Tom Coronel says he did not know that he’d been dealt a drive-through penalty in Race 2 of the Red Bull Ring TCR Europe series weekend until just before the finish.

Coronel led a highly entertaining race from pole for 12 out of 13 laps, but appeared to be ducking a drive-through penalty that was officially communicated already on lap seven.

The penalty related to Coronel’s Boutsen Ginion squad having worked on the Dutchman’s Honda after the five-minute board was shown on the grid.

Coronel completed the race without serving his punishment, finishing third on the road after slipping back in intensified rain late on, but was ultimately classified 18th when his drive-through was converted into a 30-second post-race time penalty.

Speaking to TouringCarTimes, Coronel has now revealed that his behaviour came not courtesy of rebellion, but because he simply wasn’t aware of the penalty.

“I didn’t know about the penalty until three laps before the end,” he said. “I saw the drive-through sign when I came to the start/finish line and I said on the radio ‘Hey [number] 50, that’s me, why did I get a penalty?’ They [the team] said they were discussing it with race control and told me to race on.

“I looked if there was a black flag but there never was, so I figured there was no problem.”

Coronel said he did not know what the penalty was about until after the race, when the team informed him that it concerned the grid procedures.

“There was nothing special on the grid, no problem, so I had no idea. I still don’t know what went on there. I will have to ask my engineer.”

Coronel delivered a spectacular scene in the race when he saved a massive slide at Turn 1 as rain started to fall, but seemed to have enjoyed the moment as much as anyone.

“Good, huh?! Everybody thought I was gonna’ spin, right! Don’t underestimate papa!”