Japan GP probe after chequered flag shown a lap early

The blunder means that under F1 rules the finishing positions and points will be calculated at the end of lap 52, and not the full race distance of 53 laps.

Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas crosses the finish at the Japanese Grand Prix .   -  Reuters

Motorsport’s governing body, the FIA, are to launch an investigation after the chequered flag was shown a lap early at Sunday’s Japanese Grand Prix.

The blunder means that under Formula One rules the finishing positions and points will be calculated at the end of lap 52, and not the full race distance of 53 laps.

It was good news for Racing Point’s Sergio Perez who crashed at the start of lap 53 in ninth position. As a result of the error he is now classified as finishing and scores two championship points.

Renault’s Nico Hulkenberg had inherited ninth on what he thought was the final lap but now is relegated to 10th while Racing Point’s Lance Stroll crossed the line 10th at the end of lap 53 but drops to 11th and scores no points.