Race stewards conducting a post-race review of the accident between Mercedes' Michael Schumacher and Williams' Bruno Senna concluded that the multiple world champion was to blame, and that Schumacher would duly have to serve a five-place starting grid penalty at the next race in Monaco.
The two cars crashed going into turn 1 at the Circuit de Catalunya
at the start of the 12th lap of the Spanish Grand Prix, when Schumacher's faster car ran right into the back of the much slower Williams
as it tried to brake for the corner.
Schumacher initially insisted that he was not to blame for the accident.
"If you look at the overhead shot you can see he moves right to defend his position and then in the braking point he moves left," explained Schumacher adding: ""It's in the braking phase ... I couldn't avoid him."
Commentating on BBC Radio 5live
, F1 test driver Jaime Alguersuari
disagreed with the multiple world champion: "That was completely Michael's fault. He ran into the back of Senna's car without an intention of overtaking."
The Spanish driver added: "I'd like to hear what Schumacher say ... I'm sure it won't be his fault!"
As both Schumacher and Senna retired from the race after the accident in Barcelona, the stewards announced that they would review the incident after the race was finished.
The official release from the stewards published just after 5pm local time reads: "The Stewards, having received a report from the Race Director, have considered the following matter, determine a breach of the regulations has been committed by the competitor named below [7 - Michael Schumacher, Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team] and impose the penalty referred to."
The offence is stated as "Causing a collision - Involved in an incident as defined by Article 16.1 of the FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations," adding: "The driver of Car 7 Michael Schumacher collided with Car 19 Bruno Senna at Turn 1 and forced him to retire from the event."
The decision by the stewards is listed as a "Drop of five grid positions for the next event."