Liam Lawson has been cruelly robbed of a competitive result in the final FIA Formula 2 race at Monza after his onboard fire extinguisher went off.
Exploding fire extinguishers have become something of a regular annoyance for F2 drivers the past few seasons, with Lawson merely the latest victim.
The Hitech racer was quick all race.
He had started fourth but was into third by lap one.
A gutsy move around the outside of Guanyu Zhou at the second chicane promoted Lawson to second on lap five.
His pursuit of race leader Oscar Piastri was then cut short when the safety car was deployed moments later.
Almost everyone running the soft compound of tyre took the opportunity to complete their compulsory pitstop.
The profusion of traffic that had swarmed pitlane cost Lawson a few positions, but he was still well in touch with the leading cars on the same strategy.
Only four cars opted not to pit, including Marcus Armstrong. He was on the alternative strategy by starting on the harder tyres.
Lawson was technically fourth in the queue of the cars that had pitted when the race went green again.
The Kiwi found himself in the mix for a solid top ten finish as the rest of the field began to peel into the pits.
However, on lap 22 of 30, Lawson grounded to a stop along the main straight. His in-car extinguisher had gone off inexplicably, forcing him to retire.
The result was a bitter blow for Lawson’s championship ambitions, especially considering points leader Piastri claimed his second win of the year to further pad his advantage.
Armstrong profited from a penultimate lap collision to clinch P10 and the final points-paying position.
Formula 2 heads to the Sochi Autodrom in Russia for the sixth round of the season on September 24-26.