F1: Grosjean hit with 5-place Monaco grid penalty

Published May. 23, 2015 8:31 a.m. ET

MONACO (AP) French driver Romain Grosjean has been handed a five-place grid penalty at the Monaco Grand Prix because of an unscheduled gearbox change.

Race regulations stipulate that drivers have to complete six consecutive races before they are allowed to change gearboxes. Monaco is the sixth race of the season.

Grosjean had to change his gearbox after encountering problems late in the Spanish GP two weeks ago, motorsport's governing body FIA said Saturday.

The grid penalty will hit Grosjean particularly hard at Monaco, where it is notoriously difficult to overtake due to the tight, sinewy nature of the small track.

Grosjean was 11th fastest in qualifying, and so will start from 16th on the grid on Sunday.