Jolyon Palmer's championship hopes have been hit by a stewards decision to exclude him from the results of qualifying over a breach of the GP2 Series Technical Regulations.

The DAMS #7 was found to have less than a litre of fuel left in the tank after Friday afternoon's qualifying session. The regulations require at least this amount to be present for testing purposes, as is the case with the Formula 1 cars.

As a result, Palmer's qualifying times have been deleted, although the stewards have allowed him to start Saturday's feature race despite not having technically set a time within 107% of Stoffel Vandoorne's pole lap.

Palmer - who had been due to start the race in fourth place on the grid - will now start from the back in 26th position, putting him very much on the backfoot in his championship battle with Carlin's Felipe Nasr. As a result of Palmer's exclusion, Nasr will now start Saturday's race from seventh place on the grid alongside his team mate Julian Leal.

In addition, Johnny Cecotto Jr. has also been handed a three place grid penalty after being deemed to have impeded Palmer during qualifying, in a manner that the stewards decided was 'reckless' on the part of the Trident driver.

Cecotto originally qualified in 21st place, moved up to 20th as a result of Palmer's exclusion, but now drops to 23rd place on the grid for the feature race start 3.40pm (2.40pm BST).

Palmer and Cecotto will both be aiming to race into the top eight so that under reverse grid rules they will salvage a chance of competing for the win in Sunday's 21-lap sprint race 2 at 10.35am (9.35am BST).

Revised feature race starting grid

1. Stoffel Vandoorne ART Grand Prix
2. Arthur Pic Campos Racing
3. Mitch Evans Russian Time
4. Raffaele Marciello Racing Engineering
5. Simon Trummer Rapax
6. St?phane Richelmi DAMS
7. Felipe Nasr Carlin
8. Julian Leal Carlin
9. Andr? Negrao Arden International
10. Rio Haryanto EQ8 Caterham Racing
11. Daniel Abt Hilmer Motorsport
12. Stefano Coletti Racing Engineering
13. Kimiya Sato Campos Racing
14. Marco Sorensen MP Motorsport
15. Jon Lancaster Hilmer Motorsport
16. Takuya Izawa ART Grand Prix
17. Daniel De Jong MP Motorsport
18. Rene Binder Arden International
19. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs Rapax
20. Sergio Canamasas Trident
21. Pierre Gasly EQ8 Caterham Racing
22. Artem Markelov Russian Time
23. Johnny Cecotto Jr. * Trident
24. Nathana?l Berthon Venezuela GP Lazarus
25. Sergio Campana Venezuela GP Lazarus
26. Jolyon Palmer ** DAMS

* Three place grid penalty for impeding a rival competitor** Excluded from qualifying for breach of Technical Regulations