Hamilton gets reprimand but keeps pole

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Lewis Hamilton's Montreal pole position will stand

Lewis Hamilton will keep his pole position for the Canadian Grand Prix despite stopping his car on his way back to the pits to avoid running too low on fuel.

The FIA have issued a $10,000 fine for exceeding the maximum time allowed to return to the pits and given Hamilton an official reprimand.

The stewards’ statement read:

The team instructed the driver to stop on the circuit causing him to exceed the maximum time as defined in Document 15 – Race Directors’ Not to Teams of 11 June 2010, 19:06

Offence: Breach of article 15.1 of the 2010 FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations
Penalty: Reprimand and a fine of $10,000

Article 15.1 of the Sporting Regulations simply says:

The stewards or race director may give instructions to competitors by means of special circulars in accordance with the Code. These circulars will be distributed to all competitors who must acknowledge receipt.

The radio message McLaren gave Hamilton told him to stop in order to avoid having too little fuel in order to give a sample after qualifying. This is required under article 6.6.2 of the Technical Regulations:

Competitors must ensure that a one litre sample of fuel may be taken from the car at any time during the Event.

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    Keith Collantine
    Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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    182 comments on “Hamilton gets reprimand but keeps pole”

    1. Interesting decision. They decided to put another lap in that they didn’t plan for? I’m surprised they didn’t get a grid drop.

      1. That’s my thought, too, as I commented on the qualifying report.

        1. Spot on that lap was plan-B. Happy they didn’t spoil the race for us today but the crowd had something to cheer to see an F1 driver pushing his own car to the pitlane.

          1. Yeah that was a good spectacle. Reminiscent of the old days. It’s good to see the Stewards not caning the character out of the sport. It’s starting to get it’s soul back.

      2. I think Hamilton was lucky to get over the finish line with 8 seconds to go and just enough fuel to do another fast lap, so they went for it.

        This was a great spectacle, i would be really gutted, it if had been deemed to be a serious rule infringement and punished with taking his fastest time.

        This is exactly what i want to see, teams and drivers taking some risks and making it (or blowing it).

    2. If Schumacher did it instead…

      1. Same thing would’ve happened. If he did it in his Ferrari days, uproar would have been caused.

      2. an interesting experiment would be the following: during qualifying and the race, have 3 stewards locked in a room without any monitors and without any way of watching the action on track. When there is an incident, have somebody enter the room and describe to them the incident in generic terms – without mentioning which team or driver is in question. Ask the stewards what the penalty should be and hopefully get an answer that is not spoiled by the influence of who the driver or team is. I bet if this is the system that was in place, all of the penalties and decisions we have seen from the stewards would be very different, and would be straight-up interpretations of the rules.

        1. Glad Iam not the only one who thinks how different things would be in the cases offerrari/redbull/mclaren commited offence and got away with it compared to others doing it.

        2. I think thats a ridiculous idea, the situations are normally (not in this case!) far too complicated to attempt that, and they have to take into account all factors, not just straight sticking to the rules. In your own words, its an interpretation of the rules. And that is what it should be.

          1. Hence interesting experiment, an it is. Obviously impractical but do get off your high horse Henry.

    3. Well I’m glad he hasn’t been stripped of Pole, but it’s still a bit silly. Not in the spirit of motor racing surely? It didn’t affect what went on in qualifying and no one was harmed, or annoyed – infact it gave a lot of entertainment for the viewers!

      1. You seriously think that the FIA cares about “the spirit of motor racing”?

        1. I know the FIA don’t care about it. My comment still stands and it should be seen as questioning the FIA, rather than saying they usually act in the spirit of racing.

          1. don’t forget that the 1 laps worth of fuel was worth the diff between pole and p2. I thought they deserved a grid penalty. surprised he didn’t get one.

            Don’t blame FIA for acting within the rules. rules are there to be followed.

            Imagine if this is a precedent? Every driver wanting to stop on the track?

            1. Hello there, Lewis Hamilton hater

            2. @varun. Exactly. If it’s against the rules it’s against the rules. Period. Red Bull could’ve done the same and gotten P1 and P2 given the diffference the weight of that fuel makes. I think it’s kind of stupid they fined him rather than a (small) grid penalty. By fining him they’re basically sending the message that you can break/bend the rules and buy pole position. $10,000 means nothing to drivers who make as much as they do. What’s the incentive to follow the rules in the future? McLaren knew exactly how much fuel they were putting in the tank. I think it’s ironic that some are saying the fine isn’t “in the spirit of motor racing.” What’s not in the spirit of motor racing is knowingly bending the rules to see if you can get away with giving yourself a small advantage. I realize the advantage is very small, but in qualifying that’s all it takes… end rant.

            3. @Anon to say that you have to follow the rules period is being a Hamlition hater is stupid on your part and shows how idiotic your ideas are.

            4. Well, we have not forgotten how to make fuel loads adjustments, as we were using it 2 seasons ago.

              Lets see:

              1 Lap of fuel in Canada Means 0,0632 Sec advantage.
              1 Kg of fuel means 0,031 Sec advantage.

              Times made in Q3:

              HAM 75,105
              VET 75,373 +0,268
              WEB 75,420 +0,315
              ALO 75,435 +0,330

              Lewis Hamilton did not take pole because fuel load advantage. He just had an opportunity to make one more lap and he took it.

              He made a stunning lap, everybody who was watching Quali saw that incredible lap and he beat Red Bulls fair and Square.

              That pole was not about fuel loads, this pole is about Driving Skills and Driver Character… a pleasure to see still there is at least one driver who can make the difference.

              I found the penalty fair because there are safety reasons for not doing that, so a fine is ok.

              What I found a little bit naive is “reprimands”, from the moment nobody knows what does it means, or if there are some kind of possible future penalties for accumulating certain number of reprimands in a season.

            5. @IDR if he wanted to be legal he had no option to do the 1 lap. people don’t get that.

      2. Totally agree with you, deserved (if there is such a thing) pole but was a bit silly to run so low. They didn’t think they needed that last flying lap (with 15sec to flag).

        I’ve been scanning the internet ever since Quali finished trying to find news on this. IMO correct decision there had to be some kind of penalty

        1. If he hadn’t gone for a second lap on fuel he really didn’t have “available” he would been 4th and not 1st. FIA strikes again another stupid obvious rule violation gotten away with. This is rubbish. McLaren and Hamilton buys themselves a pole position.

          Rules outdated possible but they are still there and should therefor be adhered to.

          Disgusted. I hope he get jumped and stuck in traffic so he can’t take advantage of his P1 and soft tire position tomorrow and end up pushing himself to hard for a visit to the wall of champions.

          If they had DRIVEN the car in to pits at decent speeds I would congratulated him on a good quali but this is to much. Not deserved 1st place. Relegate to 4th which would been his position if you took away his fastest lap (last lap).

          1. Hello there Lewis Hamilton hater. The guy can never win with you guys right??

            1. Its one thing to be a hater, but its the rules and aerodynamic development for that pace costs far more than $10,000. How many reprimands can he get?

            2. hell there Lewis Hamilton butt-boy. The guy can never do no wrong with you right?

            3. Electrolite
              13th June 2010, 20:00

              “Hello there Lewis Hamilton hater. The guy can never win with you guys right??”

              “hell there Lewis Hamilton butt-boy. The guy can never do no wrong with you right?”

              Some pretty solid evidence how completely stupid both parties are.

      3. William Wilgus
        12th June 2010, 21:58

        It certainly DID affect qualifying—he was carrying less wight than he legally should have been (according to the rule of only so much time to get back to the pits). Therefore, he should have lost not only the pole, but at least a few places on the grid as well!

        1. 2 and half tenths though? Surely it didn’t knock that off? I’m no Hamilton fan, but after seeing that onboard lap…

        2. No he did not – there is only a requirement to have a liter left AFTER qualifying, not for an amount at the end of the fast lap.

          If you make a mistake in the lap after your fast lap, or miss the pitlane entry by celebrating your pole, and it does not lead you to block anyone, that looks silly, but it is not, should not, be a big issue. How is this really different.

          I would be much more upset if I found now, more than an hour after it finished, that due to some technicality, he was stripped of his pole.

          I guess they might have wanted to penalise the team and Hamilton a bit harsher, but did not want to alter the pole sitter after the fact.

          I would guess (hope) they talked to McLaren and told them that the reprimand meant that if this happened ever again, it would mean back of the grid for them. Oh, and if they please could put a bigger margin on their fuelling in the race too, to avoid communication errors :-p

          1. Indeed. Like if Hamilton or Vettel were got caught up in a pit lane race again it’d be treated much more seriously.

            1. Charlie Whiting said he doesn’t mind drivers racing in the pitlane …

              Just as long as they don’t push each other off the fastlane (or come very sideways out of their box)

          2. Fully agree with you on that. Those were epic images of Lewis doing an amazing lap, sitting up in the car and even pushing it.

            From comments made by Withmarsh, it is clear McLaren did not even plan this, but they had luck Lewis had the time and the fuel to do 1 more lap after Webber was faster than him.

            Also says, that the FIA checked. If it would have been deemed to be planned and systematic, they would have discarded the fastest lap.

        3. It wasn’t that Hamilton ran underweight – as far as we know, he didn’t.

          A mandatory fuel sample is taken from each car. If there isn’t any fuel to take then the car is deemed to have failed the mandatory fuel test (otherwise teams could run illegal rocket fuel and have the driver burn through it before it can be tested). Hamilton put in an extra lap at the end of Q3 which meant that he risked there not being enough fuel left in the car for the sample. McLaren therefore ordered him to switch the engine off and stop. There may have been a small weight advantage gained with running a lap less fuel but there doesn’t appear to be any question about Hamilton running underweight (which would be a clear cut, straight to the back of the grid job).

          The FIA appears to be taking issue with cars running without enough fuel to return to the pits. Cars currently run with fuel for an outlap, timed lap/s, inlap and fuel sample. If they could be run with just inlap, timed lap/s and fuel sample then there’s a small weight advantage – albeit one that could be significant on a track like Spa. Imagine the chaos of a qualifying session with cars stopping all over the place at the closing stages. In the wake of Mike Conway’s Indy 500 crash there’s also a safety issue to be considered.

        4. ‘legally’? – it’s in a FIA memo William.

          The fuel weight advantage would have meant he’s finish around a 100th ahead of Webber rather than 0.258 ahead. So you really think it’d be fair or good for F1 to send him a few places down the grid? For what? Being too good a driver?!

          1. Electrolite
            12th June 2010, 23:07

            That’s kind of what im saying.

            And in light of your post, Tim, I sorta take back what I said about the FIA being silly – I do see what you mean – if all teams started doing this is would be chaos!

            And Patrick I know they’re allowed to race in the pitlane – wrong choice of word on my part. I was just taking a mere example!

            1. Sorry Electrolite, should have said I agreed with you. Tim’s point is good too, I suppose yet again Hamilton has inadvertently (or not – but this time I think so) exposed a loop-hole that probably needs fixing, as Tim says for safety reasons, particularly at long circuits.

          2. Yer kind of following on from what Tim said, if they allowed teams to get away with this we’d get to the point where teams would run so little fuel that they’d all stop out on track after their final run in Q3, would be a nonsense

            1. Exactly. The other teams all seemed to be aware of this, as some of them stated immediately after qualifying that it was illegal. I’d be surprised if McLaren thought that what they were doing was totally legitimate, they just thought they could get away with it. In the cutthroat world of F1 though, you’ve got to know that the instant you do something that isn’t by the book the other teams are going to be crying foul. I think it’s right that there was a penalty, I just think it was the wrong penalty given the fact that $10,000 is pocket change to someone like Hamilton. It sends the message that you can buy pole. If you’re gonna buy pole it should be bought through millions in salary to Adrian Newey ;-). Either way though, hats off to Hamilton. That was a stellar lap, and I wish him the best of luck in the race tomorrow!

            2. We’ve seen other drivers return to the pits instead of putting another flying lap in because they don’t have ‘enough fuel’ in Q3 this season (even when they’ve not put a good lap on the board) – presumably they thought they’d get penalised for doing what Ham has done.

    4. Nothing McLaren can’t afford but still sucks. At least he keeps pole.

    5. Great stuff, awesome lap, awesome driver. A joy to watch and so glad it’s been kept. Well done Lewis.

    6. Hold on a sec – “If it was Schumacher” – Two years ago they’d have pulled Mclarens pants down, slapped they’re backsides and relegated him to the back of the grid.

      Massa’s unsafe release in 08 comes to mind …….

      1. Which of the two? Valencia or Singapore?

      2. The person who asked “If it was Schumacher” was referring to the fans reaction, not the FIA’s.

    7. Oh good, another reprimand. Interesting that the last time this precise offence was committed, both the offending drivers (Hamilton and Kovalainen, Malaysia ’08) were put back five places on the grid.

      Stewarding this year seems on the whole more lenient but certainly no more consistent.

      1. Strictly speaking, it wasn’t the same offence, since the maximum lap time rule didn’t exist in Malaysia 08, indeed, it was create after that race to avoid a repeat. Hamilton and Kovalainen’s penalties were for impeding Heidfeld and Alonso.

      2. Weren’t they moved back down the grid for impeding, not being slow?

        1. Maybe they were, and the “maximum time” rule was introduced to prevent such a thing from happening again. Certainly I remember it being discussed in the context of that incident, though.

          1. Er no, it was a completely different offence

            1. Indeed, a driver could still impede another, but beat the maximum time.

        2. MouseNightshirt
          13th June 2010, 0:06

          Keith is right.

    8. Untitled258
      12th June 2010, 21:51

      Right, im not saying Lewis should be punished for today, because i dont think he should.


      All these reprimands he is getting, is this the 3rd now? How many reprimands do you need before you get punished? ATM its just kinda meaningless.

      1. Were they for the same thing?
        When was the last time Ferrari got a reprimand for something they did wrong?


        1. Untitled258
          12th June 2010, 22:01

          Well one was the weaving in Malaysia, one was the pits in China with Vettel and one was today.

          Not the same thing no, but in football say if you foul someone you could get a yellow, and then deliberate handball or something and another yellow and get sent off (Terrible example i know). I would of thought a reprimand is a reprimand and eventually it would lead to an actual punishment, which it doesn’t seem too.

          Like i said, i dont think he should be punished for this, its the teams fault if anything. Just the whole reprimand thing confuses me.

          1. ISn’t it more like you get a warning not to do something again? So if Hamilton weaves on track, gets sideways out of his pitbox or runs out of fuel after qualifying again, then he weill get punished.

            Just like with Massa in 2008. First time (valencia) he got a reprimand and the team a fine for the unsafe pit release (and Massa’s unsfe driving with Sutil) and the second time (Singapore) he got a drive-through penalty.

          2. Here’s an example for you…The reprimands that Hamilton has received this year apply to everyone! In my opinion this is like the yellow card (reprimand) a sprinter gets for a false start! At the same time everyone gets a yellow card and the next one with a false start gets disqualified!
            It will be interesting to see if this kind of logic is applied if a driver besides Hamilton tries to do what has done in the past races ;)

      2. Valid point, one can only assume there is only punishment if the same offence occurs.

        1. Perhaps this is what should have applied to Schumacher’s last corner pass in Monaco then? A reprimand?

      3. The only occasion I can remember when a reprimand led to a penalty was when in Australia 2006 Sato was reprimanded for ignoring blue flags, and was disqualified from the Chinese GP for doing the same thing. Albers, who commited the same offence, got a 25 second penalty since he didn’t have a prior reprimand.

    9. STRFerrari4Ever
      12th June 2010, 21:55

      I’m beginning to warm to Lewis Hamilton, I’ve never liked him but his sheer talent and aggressive style is making me appreciate his quality. Good decision by the stewards before they would’ve demoted him many places but now the FIA have improved the stewarding area.

      1. Wonderful comment and very fair.

        1. +1 Great comment.

      2. I am a Red Bull fan and I agree. Lewis should keep pole, because he pushed like a maniac on that last lap and won the place. I am also warming to him, esp after watching him push the car and seeing the joy and emotions he displayed after the lap. He did really well, and for Red Bull, 2nd and 3rd is great considering Canada is a track where they were not expected to do well.

      3. Agreed – I couldn’t stand him when he first entered F1, but the last 2 seasons his aggression and determination in a car thats not the best is what has made me like him more. Similar to what made me a Schumi fan years ago.

    10. This is perhaps the fairest decision ever given by FIA.

      I hope the comments on this post don’t go into counts of hundreds as in the case of other FIA stewarding decisions.

      Giving Hamilton anything other than a monetary penalty (grid-place drop) would have been blasphemous. And not giving him a penalty at all would have encouraged all drivers to do the same.

      It was a petty crime, and it got a petty penalty. Case closed.

      1. A warning would be a better punishment. However, Lewis would have a collection of warnings by the end of the season.

      2. Surely giving Hamilton a fine is actually an advantage to him as it means his wallet will be lighter for the race?

        Disgraceful precedent IMO.


        1. Jhonnie Siggie
          12th June 2010, 22:36

          Well I dont know about disgraceful but I agree that this kind of thing should be discouraged just based on the aesthetics alone. The fans must be wondering why is the guy having to push the car that just got pole back to the pits.

          1. They were cheering. They loved it, just like when Button had to run to the podium in Monaco. It shows a lighter side, and also shows how close to the limit the cars are. Plus, Senna running out of fuel in the past and getting a lift from Mansell led to one of the most iconic F1 images ever. I quite like the idea of occasionally (not too often) seeing cars run out at the end

            1. Agreed. Stepping out of the stuffy, uptight appearance is a good thing for F1 as it shows drivers and teams to be human. It reminds me of clips like Mansell trying to push his car to the finish in ’84 at Dallas. or Prost doing the same in ’86 in Germany. These are the things we harken back to when we drum up some of our favorite moments.

              Even though I’m not a Hamilton fan (don’t hate the guy, but I’m very “meh” about him overall), I’d love to see these shots of him getting out and pushing the car himself in the midst of celebrating his pole show up in “best moments of the season” type montages. It was unusual and unexpected.

            2. I liked it when he skipped up to his rear wing, made me really happy to see him chearful again. Happy Hamilton was really missed in Istanbul.

      3. I used to love this site but i think its time i moved on.

        1. Adios my numerical friend

          1. Hasta la Bye Bye … and take Anon with you while you’re at it

    11. William Wilgus
      12th June 2010, 22:06

      Regardless of whether or not Hammy should have been penalized, I think he made a huge error in choosing the soft tire to start the race on. I look for a lap 2 pit stop from him!

      1. David Johnson
        12th June 2010, 22:15

        Ah…remember the mediums take 2-3 laps to come in and the redbulls have alonso and button behind them with more grippy tyres and better straightline speed…its going to be fun…I tell thee

        1. My my, didn’t think about Alonso fighting past the Redbulls. Hoefully he cocks it up and takes one of them out. Leaving Button to sneak round the outside in a daring three abreast overtake, proclaimed Mansell like by all who see it. Ham P1 But P2 Web P3?

          I CAN DREAM

          1. Well thats my prediction so I can dream with you. Prehaps we can add Schumi doing a stunning race to get to 5th?

            1. why not, sounds like fun!

            2. I am looking forward to a senario like that, it would be great to see that kind of thing again.

    12. colin grayson
      12th June 2010, 22:08

      the team told hamilton to stop ; he followed team instructions
      wonder how much fuel he had left in reality …how big is the sample required anyway ?

      1. sample needed is 1KG

        1. 1 Litre.

          But as Eddie Jordan pointed out, there’s usually enough fuel left in the tank on vapour alone.

          1. That story that Eddie Jordan gave took me by surprise.

            I remember Jordan telling how they were wringing every drop of fuel out of one of their cars after it got stranded on track in similar circumstances.

            He told that they even took the fuel lines out of the car to drain them.

            and now all of a sudden he comes with the story that he can’t imagine there being a problem? What?

            Or was that another team boss I’m thinking about?

    13. Regardless, the rule needs to be clarified or changed, because otherwise we’ll have cars stopping everywhere after Q3.

    14. another reprimend??? someone likes him very much! :)

      1. Jhonnie Siggie
        12th June 2010, 22:40

        Do you think the are trying to overcompensate for past poor judgments in penalizing him?

        1. Hopefully not, not because it doesn’t make me happy but because if thats what they’re doing you have to assume they’ll swing back the other way at some point.

          What the FIA seem to be doing is making, with the notable exception of Schumacher however the rules were iron clad in his case, decisions in favour of improved racing and fan friendly results. Maybe they should of penalised Hamilton but this is the first non Redbull driver on pole all season, an the prospect for the race is infinitely more facinaiting with Hamilton in front of the Redbulls.

    15. Stuart Fenton
      12th June 2010, 22:17

      seeing him ride his car like robin hood when it slowed, was a strange sight. Im suprised he wasnt told off for breaking point 65.9 of the strict fia rules

    16. Two great pictures on the last two articles. I’m looking forward to seeing more quali pics.

    17. Lewis stopped his car to avoid running out of fuel? Is taht true? I thought he stopped to save the amount of fuel needed for the FIA sample?

      1. Jarred Walmsley
        13th June 2010, 9:18

        Same thing is it not?

    18. Glad to see he didn’t have pole taken away from him. He put in a great lap. I’m sure all the teams run close to the limit on fuel (how many times do we hear about them having to save fuel in races?!) so McLaren didn’t do anything wrong. Admittedly they should’ve been able to get Lewis back to the pits, but they had a chance to do an extra lap so they took it. Would’ve been a bit foolish of them to tell Lewis not to go for pole just so he could get back to the pits.

    19. Hey, there’s no specific rule in FIA books to be broken:

      It seems that the fact that the requirement to return to the garage in a minimum time is enshrined in an FIA memo, rather than the sporting regs, left a loophole for McLaren to exploit.


      1. Jhonnie Siggie
        12th June 2010, 22:46

        And F1 is all about pushing limits right? Just like the f-duct and Red Bull’s trick suspension. It will be unfortunate though if we see a bunch of cars do it in the next quali

    20. Jhonnie Siggie
      12th June 2010, 22:44

      A $10,000 fine is well worth the coverage that the pole sitting car gets. In their general ledger, I think they will put the 10K as “advertising expense” rather that “fines and other sundry items” :)

    21. $10 grand is dirt cheap for a pole (and it’s tax deductible as a business expense.) How many more drivers or teams are we going to see pulling similar stunts? Also, the Sporting Regulations only mention “fines” for pit lane speeding – all other penalties are drive-throughs or grid penalties.

      1. How many more drivers or teams are we going to see pulling similar stunts?

        Probably none now that someone’s done it once and got caught.

        1. You’re absolutely right … so … if you’re the first one to pull a “nifty trick”, $10k. Next time, five places on the grid. Is that fair?

        2. Quite the contrary. The FIA has set a precedent, you can do it, it simply costs you $10,000 and a reprimand. It’s Hamilton’s second reprimand in 6 races with no further action, so it seems reprimands lead to nothing either anyway…

          1. It’s because he’s comitted different offences. If he does this again, or weaves/has an unsafe pit release again, he’ll be punished further. Because he has had reprimands for those.

        3. not a hamilton hater
          13th June 2010, 12:54

          im not his fan, but this move is just as smart as the f-duct is. he got the pole because his car was just that little bit lighter so he could make the difference.it would have been fair if he had driven his car to the pits and confront the consequences afterwards. i think next race redbull will stop their car right at the end of their flying lap if they can get away with it just with a reprimand(and some change).

          on the other hand it was lovely for all the F1 fans to see lewis push his car and being so happy!

          1. the car being lighter would have brought him app. 0:00.05 seconds or so, hardly the amount of time that did it for him

    22. Another great solution by the stewards.
      They been doing a great job this year.
      No foolish punishment that would change things for no reason (spa 08 to name one example)

    23. For doing his last lap Hamilton accepts he wasn’t going to reach the boxes by the time limit. This first possition is not legal, because for that extra-lap time it was necessary to break the rules. Everybody honored the rules but Hamilton, and he took advantage from it.

      1. My thoughts exactly. McLaren would’ve known the fuel situation but chose to go for another lap anyway, benefiting from that decision.

        Even though I believe the $10k fine is a toothless punishment, I do feel that any of the standard punishments (5 place grid penalty etc) would’ve been too harsh. Tough call for the stewards…

    24. McLaren is certainly getting off easy this year. Even unfavourable rulings end up favourable.

      1. Bout time really. Weird that, when the English President of the FIA was in charge the Italian team got all the fun.

        Now there’s a French former leader of Ferrari in charge, the British team seems to have been given licence to stretch the limits.

        1. I actually believe it is because Todt stretched the limits of the rules so much when he was at Ferrari, he looks upon it favourably

    25. Mike "the bike" Schumacher
      12th June 2010, 23:27

      Nice for Hamilton to have his own Alesi moment.

      I think I remember, that some team I think it was B.A.R. had some kind of system which ensured that there was always at least enough fuel left to take a sample why don’t Mclaren have such a system.

      1. Probably because when BAR were caught with that system they got banned for two races!

        1. Or, if someone has it, they have so far been careful enough not to have been caught at it, of course. But I am not cynical to think that, I think.

        2. Nice take on that (although BAR were punished because they reasoned that if there has to be a minimum 1 Kg of weight in the fuel system at all time for inspection, it also counts towards the empty weight of 650 kg.).

    26. Has anyone else noticed how Hamilton is always on the limit of the rules and is punished differently every season? In 2007 (like 2010) he wasn’t punished for anything, in 2008 he was punished for everything (and managed to be the wdc anyways).

      1. Hello, Lewis Hamilton hater.
        He’s good. Deal with it.

        1. Anon (S Hughes?), just because someone says something other than “I love Hamilton, he’s amaaaazing 11!!” doesn’t mean they hate him.
          Grow up.

        2. “Lewis Hamilton hater”? Did you even read the final sentence of Enigma’s post?

    27. It’s not that easy to believe Martin Whitmarsh. He tells us that they had a “miscommunication”.

      Apparently they were then able to discover that miscommunication pretty quickly, within a few minutes while Lewis was doing his run.

      And just by accident, the result of that miscommunication wasn’t two laps less fuel than needed, or one or two too many. No, it was just the right amount to boost Lewis’ time just enough to make sure he was able to grab pole.

      McLaren’s first pole of the year at that.

      And also just by accident, this happened on Lewis’ last run in Q3, when the track is gaining with every minute of running.

      Also, it happened to happen on the one track of the whole season which was more “green” on Friday than every other track, and which also turned out to be even greener than expected, so also in this respect it happened at the track where this tiny miscommunication amounted to the biggest possible gain.

      And from now on, no one else will be able to use this trick innocently. Seems McLaren told the guys in their think-tank to come up with tricks or improvements which are hard to copy by the other teams, just as the F-Duct.

      And! Within these few minutes between sending Lewis out, “discovering” their “error” and radioing their decision to Lewis, they were able to figure out that they had to weigh up something from the regulations against something which just got passed around as an FIA memo some time ago.

      1. And I thought I was the master conspiracy theorist. I hand the mantle on to you.

        1. I regard myself as pretty suspicious as soon as someone utters a “conspiracy theory”. It merely strikes me as odd that an incident which was in many ways perfectly inclined and perfectly timed to help McLaren’s cause gets declared as being just the accidental by-product of an “error”. They’re super-lucky these guys aren’t they? REALLY .. come on, they’re way too smart and professional as an organisation to be that clumsy AND lucky like this at the same time.

      2. According to itv-f1.com, the memo was issued yesterday, June 11. Rather cheeky of McLaren!

      3. Ever watch the X-Files?

    28. MouseNightshirt
      13th June 2010, 0:07

      But seriously guys, wasn’t it just worth it to see Hamilton sitting on his car as it rolled down the straight, for him to hop off and start pushing it?!

      1. worth if it was within the rules. I want to see massa alonso also. will they be able to do that? then people would remember the ferrari bias. which is kind of stupid.

      2. It sure Was!! Watching Hamilton “surf” his car down the back straight and then get out and push his car will forever be in grained in my mind of Hamilton and his massive performance on Saturday Qualifying of the Montreal 2010 GP.

        Surely his even running that 3rd lap on the Super softs was a feat that is surely being overlooked. He beat the Red bulls in the sector (1) where they where supposed to be on their game. 0.2 !! That is massive from Hamilton.

        Speaking of him Surfing his car, has anyone found a picture of that?? Surely I am going to blow that up and put it in my Living room.!!

        1. if you think it was why was he fined?

    29. to be fair he was half way down the back straight anyway. so pretty close to the end of his in-lap.

    30. Hamilton haters – Doncha just love ’em?

      He got pole – get over it

      1. if people rant against schumi its being fair and if people point out the mistakes made by a brit people like you name then haters….LOOOOOOOOOL at your comment.

        1. I don’t rant at Schumacher, or anybody else, varun.

          1. I didn’t mean you in particular.

    31. It seems that some aren’t happy even when Hamilton is punished!

      If any other driver had done it, the result would have been the same. And Hamilton would have had pole anyway. Case closed.

    32. Hamilton’s lap was outstandning, but the rules seems to be changing with year, if not race. I’m not a Mclaren or a Hamilton fan but at the same time I thought Hamilton’s lap was outstanding. It’ll be interesting to see how much he has left in those tyres.

      But on the other hand, my mind goes back to last year where Massa had to stop on track at one race (albeit after the chequered flag) fearing he would not have enough fuel left in the tank for a sample. He didnt get punished himself, and I cant remember him getting a fine? It was some while ago though, and perhaps he did get one.

      Furthermore, this will be Hamiltion’s second reprimand of the season, albeit for a different offence. How many reprimands must a driver collect before having his knuckles stung with the cane? I think this point was raised both this website as well as the BBC.

      A brilliant qualifying session none-the-less. I look forward to watching the race on iplayer – I’ll miss the race as I’ll be working… unfortuantely!

      1. I think you’re referring to the 2009 Spanish Grand Prix.

        In the end the problem turned out to be incorrect data coming from the Ferrari, and Massa actually had enough fuel to finish!

        Whilst the FIA haven’t said anything, it does seem pretty clear that multiple reprimands will only be punished for the same offence committed multiple times, as well it should be; there are so many rules in F1!

    33. Of course Lewis gets a fine for his pole position! The guy can never win, he gets punished for everything!!!!!!!!

    34. As well he should…

    35. The team is fined for flouting the “memo.” It’s not a rule. Whitmarsh made the call to ensure that the car had enough for a sample.

      So what did Hamilton do wrong? Nothing. What was the effect on the outcome of qualifying of the team not putting in an extra liter? Nothing. Break out your calculators, it’s nothing. So let’s wrap up this particular Hamilton hate-session.

    36. never without controversy. maybe you need that to be considered ‘great’?

    37. So Sebastian Loeb lost a rally because his co-driver was not belted into the car for all of 5 meters during a stage after changing a tyre. this is total bs. One rule for one, one rule for another.

      1. Yes, there is one rule for one situation, and one rule for a completely different situation.

    38. Can someone tell Whitmarsh that 3 yellows on only 1 side of his garage is “systemic”. So the system is that you exploit every rule in F1 with even the slightest bit of marginality in it. That is what Hamilton’s side has been gaming. Yet Whitmarsh thinks he can tell other teams that once Lewis has done it he can bank it but noone else can follow.

      Anyone see the look on Button’s face as he saw Lewis pulled up?

      1. The system there being, now this case was on the table once, the next time anybody in the same situation will have to do a lot more explaining. And if they are found to give this scenario a serious thought, they will be punished.

        And Button said himself, he was pretty satisfied he got all there was from the car and was amazed at the fantastic lap Lewis did, not sad for being made to go slower.

    39. Oh how I wish this will happen to either Massa or Alonso later this season. Will it be handled differently? I think so!

      1. Er, no, Formoe. They WILL be fined and given a reprimand.

    40. This thread is still going on!! Seriously!! Everybody is a conspiracy theorist, it seems.

    41. Are you saying he DIDN’T deserve to be punished? I’m still scratching my head at the leniency. Adding in the fuel weight, he still would have been faster than Webber, but that’s not the point – the point is, he should not have gone for that final run anyway. It’s a shame, because the lap was stunning – I thought I’d throw that in before i’m jumped on and branded as another Hamilton hater. You may all call it a fair decision, but it sets a dangerous precedent. When you search for every hundreth, every thousandth, ten grand is a cheap price to pay for pole…

      1. Senna did set precedents too… we all loved him to bits when he drove Prost off and cheered for him. I revered Senna as a kid… When i grew up, well, didn’t like the idea of him all that much as a competitor. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a humanitarian and did a lot of work for people back home in Brazil and i respect that. I respect him as a person, but not much as a sportsman. Certainly not as much as i do respect Prost.

        Now Hamilton did this, some are here cheering for him :P I’ll bet a million, which i do not have :P , that a lot of people would protest if say some other driver did it. Say Schumacher, Vettel, Webber or any other for that matter :D Funnily enough i’ll be waging that people would readily run down the other car from McLaren itself if it did it. :D

    42. Hmm, wonder what Hamilton fans have to say about FIA and its stewards now. No more racist this racist that?

      If a car runs below minimum weight requirement… well, they’re not legal. However, in retrospect i can’t remember any rule which bars stopping a healthy car to preserve fuel levels and thereby weight and keeping to the rule of minimum weight, to clear any routine FIA checks. Please do correct me if i’m wrong…

      So there, all you Hamilton fans, i think it was ok, though not in the spirit of the game/ sportsmanship, but within the regulations.

      1. martin bell
        13th June 2010, 8:59

        There is no suggestion of the car having been under the minimum weight requirement. It seems, once again, that the stewards have issued the only penalty they had available, handed out for the ‘offence’ of being late back to parc ferme. Some of us are old enough to remember the sight of F1 cars regularly running out of fuel in the fuel restricted days. I, like many here, see this incident only as a slightly worrying precedent, yet another issue that needs clarification. Part of me feels sorry for Lewis, he always seems to be involved in some ‘marginal’ decisions and, on this occasion, it’s hardly his fault. A couple of weeks ago he was saying that he didn’t want to be remembered as Schumacher is, as a serial envelope pusher. Great pole lap, well deserved pole, but I don’t see the controversies coming to an end any time soon, and it may already be too late for Lewis to avoid this legacy.

        1. Hi Martin,

          Well, i’m not saying that it was underweight… but only that it was perilously close to it. So close, that the team had to radio him, radio being heard by stewards and all the world plus dog for that matter, and inform him to stop on track to save fuel. Car’s minimum weight requirement is not just for a dry car, it includes driver’s weight, fuel and oil(s) on board. In this instance, they asked him to stop, as it would have taken some fuel, and it would have possibly brought into question the overall weight of the car, which would have left McLaren in a dodgy situation. A situation mind you, that they got themselves into. So all ye Macca fans, please don’t hate the FIA. McLaren are just plain suicidal :P

          1. martin bell
            13th June 2010, 11:37

            I don’t think we have any way of knowing how close he was to the minimum weight limit, but I take your point entirely. The extension of my point is wondering if we are now going to see teams running so marginal on qualy fuel that they run out just over the line on their last lap, now that it seems that it’s ok to push your car back to the pits having run out of fuel. (or in Lewis’s case getting someone else to push it for you!!!)A ridiculous scenario of course, but stranger things have happened in F1!!

            1. You were not the only one Martin, as did Gary Anderson, who is a former tech director, now commentating on Start Sports.

              I’m impressed mate, about how we discussed stuff without getting personal. Thanks for the same…

              Reminded me of forums here about a couple of years ago or so. Yes, those of you with Flame-master 2000 scouting me out, pun is indeed intended :P

            2. martin bell
              13th June 2010, 22:32

              You know, I watched this race, for what I think is the first time ever, with another F1 fan who I don’t know very well, but was a fan of different drivers to me. We managed to discuss things during the race without getting personal and it really enhanced my enjoyment of it. So I figure that there really is no need to post in the way some do here, we’re all F1 fans after all, and in truth, you lot here are the only people that I get to talk to about the sport I have loved since 1976.

    43. The Nude Wizard
      13th June 2010, 5:29

      Everyone else carried enough fuel as per the regs, Hamilton didn’t I’m not gonna convince any one eyed DISTINGUISHED ENGLISH GENTLEMEN (better Keith? haha) haha but if Ferrari had pulled that stunt you’d be screaming for blood and calling it favouritism. I’m not debating the guys talent, but they cheated.

    44. And I don’t need someone coming along and saying “Hamilton’s good, get over it”. I know he’s bloody brilliant. I love watching him drive. But perhaps a more complex offering explaining why his actions, in this case, are acceptable would be better. I don’t care how harsh or lenient you think they’ve been on him in the past, this penalty is just not right.

    45. The cars typically burn about 0.5 – 0.75 kilo down the back straight (in my experience with rfactor :P ) so I think there’s every chance Lewis could have made it back to pits AND had enough fuel left for the sample.

      Mclaren just wanted to play it safe

      1. I suppose thats why Lewis did the first two sectors in about 1.20 minutes, because he was not going very fast, to save as much fuel as possible.

    46. Actually I would like to know the fuel consumption on the returning lap and a normal flying lap in qualification.

    47. From a purely personal perspective, Hamilton standing in his cockpit, and then pushing his car by himself was great theatre. Reminded me of Button last year at Monaco running to the podium, and Mansell giving Senna a lift back on the side-pod of his car many years ago…

      I am surprised Hamilton didn’t get a reprimand for safety for that. But glad he didn’t. Simply no point. Moments like that bring back a little bit of humanity to F1 that seems lacking these days on occasion.

    48. How many reprimends you may have before having a penalty??

      1. Jarred Walmsley
        13th June 2010, 9:29

        1 per offence, this is why Hamilton has not yet been penalised as his multiple reprimands are all for different offences, which makes perfect sense as there are many different rules and it would be unfair to be penalised for breaking two completely different rules.


        I think that once you reach a certain number of reprimands (5 or so) then you should be given a grid place drop because obviously if you have accumulated that many reprimands then you are flying by the seat of your pants and you deserve to be penalised.

        1. I was thinking something similar, Jarred. Even if you don’t break a specific rule twice, to be handed a large number of reprimands suggests a pretty lax attitude to the rules in general, which should probably be dealt with in some way.

    49. pathetic,,, it’s not right :(

    50. It’s a nice thing Hamilton showed a little comedy relief by pushing his car to the pits despite the bad things that came up about him lately in the news. Displayed the other “lighter” side of Lewis. :)

    51. I am coming to the conclusion that the worst thing for F1, is the fans. What a buch of whining……

      “Whaaaaa, he is too good and too clever. Fine him, punish him…..cuz we sure as hell can’t beat him…….”

      It was a stellar drive by a stellare driver…his team screwed up, but on here it is “Punish Hamilton”…..

      Utterly pathetic…….

      1. Well, the team can be and should have been penalized, but if a driver gets an unfair advantage, it needs to be taken away. What stewards could/ should have had done was to take the lap away (yes, flame me) and re-instated his second best lap-time as his best for the session. Now it would have possibly led to some controversy, but imagine that Lewis didn’t stop on track to save fuel and finished as P2. Now, was that so horrible? I agree that Lewis did do a better lap time, but then he also parked a perfectly healthy car on track :P FIA could and possibly should tear into McLaren once again, as they let their driver to be in such a situation. Now that’s just plain stupid on Macca’s part. Then you have the journo’s blaming the FIA (who actually act questionably from time to time) for kicking McLaren on their rear end. I mean, if you bend over and have a “kick me” sign on your back :D This time, McLaren in my books earned another free kick, not one they deliver, but one they should have been given on their derriere.

        1. Now I see, F1 fans really tend to exaggerate things! Geez… how much of an advantage did Hamilton get by not have the amount the of fuel for running down the straight? Also this is not proven at all yet, he could have enough fuel to get back and give sample.

          By taking the best lap away from Hamilton, the other drivers will get a much bigger advantage: they probably did their best lap with about one lap less(minus the staight) fuel than Hamilton.

          The bottom line is there is no regulation which stated you should get back to pits all by yourself/in time, and hamilton did nothing wrong!

          1. martin bell
            13th June 2010, 11:48

            Strange then that the team have been fined for not being back to the pits on time, if, as you say, there is no regulation for this instance. Perhaps some F1 fans, maybe even the ones prone to exaggeration, arm themselves with the facts before making judgments. That way, they know, certainly by 11.15am when you posted this, that there was enough fuel for a sample.

            1. Other teams get fined, Hamilton/McLaren get fined so what is your problem with it?

              You probably didn’t get what I meant, you guys assume Hamilton get an unfair advantage by running less fuel than the others, hence he should be penalized. However the fact is he had at least enough fuel left for a sample, like any other drivers, he did not run out of fuel, but whether there’s indeed not enough fuel to power him down the last straight you guys never know!

            2. martin bell
              13th June 2010, 14:43

              I don’t have a problem with it, I was just commenting on your statement that there isn’t a regulation (or in this case, memo) concerning getting back to the pits in time. There is. I was also commenting on your statement about it not being proven whether he had enough fuel to provide a sample. There was. Last night. I have never said that I think that an unfair advantage was gained, only that I don’t like a precedent being set of it being ok to push your car back to the pits. I was just wondering out loud where that precedent will take us.

      2. Don’t be ignorant. The driver and team work in combination. Most of us (there ARE a few Hamilton haters who want nothing more than to punish the man) feel that McLaren had a rather unfair advantage, and to penalise McLaren properly means to penalise Hamilton. This is nothing to do with Lewis as a character or a driver. Grow up.

        1. martin bell
          13th June 2010, 13:03

          Not sure why (or if) you’re calling me ignorant, and I personally don’t think that any unfair advantage was gained. I’m just not comfortable with the precedent it sets, knowing how far teams will push to gain any competitive advantage. I haven’t called for any punishment, nor do I think that LH should have lost his pole lap, which was stunning. I’m not Lewis’s biggest fan, but I do keep an open mind on all matters F1. I also feel that I am ‘grown up’ enough to hold these opinions.

    52. Have a look at the video – this is pure F1 legend stuff:


      1. It is indeed very cool.

        But “legend” – I don’t think so.

    53. Pathetic to fine and reprimand someone over this, why is there a certain time to return the car to the pits anyway after qualy? Same about the people pushing the drivers to hurry up after the race in parc ferme to get onto the podium so the ceremony can get underway in time.

      They should relax these rules a bit so we can see someone actually celebrating. Let someone show some emotion when they win…

      Look at MotoGP, what’s wrong with Rossi riding around in a chicken suit or Lorenzo jumping in a lake whilst celebrating victory?

      Some rules in F1 are way too tight and spoil the human side of the sport, I say let’s be a little less sanitized and a bit more human like it used to be a few decades ago :)

    54. Davetherave
      13th June 2010, 13:48

      IDR……….i agree, how many reprimands = 1 offence.
      And how much longer are we going to see these stupid reprimands which appear to be collected by certain top drivers who seem to keep “bending” the rules for their own personal advantage, whereas the rest just do the right thing!
      I am getting bloody fed up with it.

      1. The ability to look for every advantage is what seperates the Hamiltons, Alonsos, Sennas and Schumachers of this world from the rest. Rules are there to be bent until they are broken.

    55. Davetherave
      13th June 2010, 14:05

      Lets have a new rule…….Unless seriously damaged, all cars must be driven back to park ferme for the weigh in etc.
      Surely this would end all this squabble !

    56. ellen simpson
      13th June 2010, 17:33

      yes he should have got a grid penalty as he has cheated the other drivers at a chance at poll you look back through the other races and see how many drivers got a grid penalty for the same thing and then again in the pit lane gets away with it in there cutting of other drivers of and yet he got away with it if that was any other driver they would not get the same treatment as him.i think they need to rethink on this kinda stuff and stop having one rule for one driver and different rules for the rest of the drivers.so yes he got away with everything.

    57. Its not as dramatic as you all put it to be. Lewis wanted to conserve fuel so he started pushing. The track was pretty much empty, Fans wanted some action. That all!


    58. With the lack of on track celebrations in Formula One I thought Hamilton stopping on track and sitting out of the cockpit while the car coasted down the straight and then pushing the car was great.

      A bit like when Button had to run to the podium at Monaco last year after parking in the wrong place.

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