Romain Grosjean will serve a three-place grid penalty in Monaco for causing the first lap accident at the Spanish Grand Prix.

The Haas driver spun on the outside of Turn 3 while running behind team-mate Kevin Magnussen. Instead of spinning off the track towards the gravel trap, Grosjean accelerated and remained in the middle of the track in a cloud of tyre smoke. Unsighted, he was hit by both Renault’s Nico Hulkenberg and Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly, ending their races early.

Grosjean explained his actions after the race, by saying “I lost the rear end in turn three and I just spun. If you look at the footage, I had wanted to avoid contact with my teammate. Kevin had a bit of a wobble, I lifted off the throttle, and then the car just went.

“I’m sorry for the others that were involved – there wasn’t much I could do once the car went. ”

While Grosjean defended his claim that he accelerated across the track to avoid other cars, the stewards thought otherwise.

A statement explained their reasoning for giving the Haas driver a three-place penalty at the next race in Monaco.

“The driver stated to the Stewards that he made the decision to cross the track, trying to avoid the other cars and that he felt this was his best option.

“The Stewards found that while it is speculation as to where the driver’s car would have ended up had he chosen other alternatives, it is certain that while crossing the track in front of the following pack of cars, which he chose to do, that a collision occurred.

“Further, in reviewing the video, the Stewards found that the car was following the line on the left side of the track and was almost fully off the track when he made the decision to cross it. The Stewards, therefore, chose to penalise the driver.”

The Frenchman was also awarded two penalty points, which now puts him on five for the 12 month period.