Mercedes have criticised the five-second time penalty Lewis Hamilton was given during the Austrian Grand Prix.Alexander Albon was a “racing incident”, while team principal Toto Wolff believes he should not have been penalised for the clasj.
Hamilton and Albon made contact at the exit of turn four. His penalty dropped him from second place to fourth in the final race classification.
“I had great pace to catch up with Valtteri [Bottas] and then a really unfortunate scenario with Alex,” said Hamilton, who also tangled with Albon at last year’s Brazilian Grand Prix.
“I mean, I can’t believe we’ve come together again, but it really felt like a racing incident. But either way, I’ll take whatever penalty they [stewards] feel I deserve and move forwards.”
Albon fell to the back of the grid and later retired from the race while Hamilton continued unimpeded.
Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said he felt the stewards didn’t claim the collision was a racing incident but did argue that five seconds was harsh.
“I would definitely say that from my perspective, the five seconds were too harsh,” Wolff said.
“We looked at the video now a couple of times. Lewis was having full lock in the corner. Albon had about 40 percent of the road left to make the corner. [It was] different to lap one where Lewis had to back out of Albon pushing Lewis.
“So in my opinion, not justified. But I recognise the complexity of the job, of coming up with the right decisions. Some go for you, some go against you.”
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