Renault chief engineer Alan Permane believes the race stewards were too harsh when deeming that Kevin Magnussen should start Sunday's Bahrain Grand Prix in the pit lane.
Magnussen was punished for failing to stop at a red light for a weight check during the second free practice session in Sakhir on Friday.
The Dane, who was only 16th fastest under the lights after he was 15th in FP1, will be up against it when he attempts to claim his first points of the season in the desert.
And Permane feels the sanction imposed is far too severe.
He told Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet: "For something that is quite frankly a routine check, it's a huge penalty,
"I would not even call it a mistake, it was a misunderstanding. I think it's very, very harsh."
Magnussen had been following the Red Bull of Daniil Kvyat to the pit lane when the incident took place.
A statement from the stewards said: "The driver failed to stop for weighing during P2 when signalled to do so by the red traffic light, the car was not returned to the FIA garage and work was undertaken.
"In accordance with Article 29.1 iv) of the FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations the driver is required to start from the pit lane."