Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Sochi Autodrom, 2020

“They’re trying to stop me” says Hamilton after double penalty for practice starts

2020 Russian Grand Prix

Posted on

| Written by and

Lewis Hamilton says he believes someone is “trying to stop me” after he was given two penalties for his practice starts in the Russian Grand Prix.

Hamilton led the early stages of the race but finished third after serving a pair of five-second time penalties.

“I need to go back and see what the rules are and what exactly I did wrong,” Hamilton told Sky. “I’m pretty sure no one’s ever got two five-second penalties for something so ridiculous before.”

The Mercedes driver stopped near the end of the pit lane exit in order to perform his two practice starts. Hamilton insisted this wasn’t out of the ordinary.

“I didn’t put anyone in danger. I’ve done this at a million tracks over the years and never been questioned on it. But it is what it is.”

“It’s to be expected,” he added. “They are trying to stop me, aren’t they?”

Speaking in the FIA press conference after the race, Hamilton explained why he decided to perform his practice start in a different location to other drivers.

“Generally, if you look at probably every race that I’ve done this year at least I always start further down,” he said. “I’ve never had a problem, done it for years.

“Here I haven’t done that before. But it says you have to be on the right after the lights, it doesn’t say how far.

“Often I don’t like to be on the rubber, that’s where everyone’s done all their starts, it’s not representative of what it’s like on the grid so I tried to get on the surface that doesn’t have any rubber.”

Mercedes believed the starting location Hamilton chose “was okay”, he said.

“It’s no different to Brazil – you drive to the end of the pit lane and you do you start. It’s actually probably safer where I was compared to Brazil because there’s a lot more space on the left. So an interesting decision.”

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

2020 Russian Grand Prix

Browse all 2020 Russian Grand Prix articles

Author information

Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
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...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

106 comments on ““They’re trying to stop me” says Hamilton after double penalty for practice starts”

  1. “Because I’m black”

    1. More like “Because I exist!”

      We race as one, the same rules for everyone yet he complains. And I know there are lots of people hooraying for Lewis.
      I just don’t get it

      1. Which rule did Lewis break?

    2. Always plays the race card. Now this loser is leading the BLM. Such a shame

      1. Can you point out the quote where he mentioned race in relation to his penalties? I must’ve missed it.

      2. That’s two incorrect statements in one sentence. How efficient!

    3. Because your racist?

    4. The sooner he retires the better it will be for the sport and all the spectators. This one time WDC with a God complex is utter trash. Of all the drivers in the world it had to be him that ended up in the Mercedes. We all saw how well he did when he was driving a car that was equal to his main rivals and not ultra dominant – no higher than 4th in the WDC after 2008. NO HIGHER THAN 4TH!
      No Mercedes = 1 X WDC for Hamilton and EVERYONE knows it.

      1. Not me. 😃

    5. Lewis gave a metaphorical single digit to the FIA after the last race where he had a controversial slogan on his T-shirt during the national anthem. The FIA let him off but he responded by saying he was going to carry on doing it. That’s saying I’m approaching the most successful driver in history so I don’t care about your rules, I’m bigger than the sport. The FIA will punish him as hard as the rules allow whilst he brings politics into the sport.

      It’s going to be a repeat of 2011 ref penalties, but luckily for Lewis he’s driving the Mercedes rocketship, so he’ll still win the WDC. But for sure he’s a terrible loser who only cares about revenge for past slights.

    6. Netflix mate..grab the pop corn.

  2. Grow up Lewis. The stewards were spot on. Viva Mika Salo, top notch sportsman.

    1. This is a first. As Toto after, first time a driver has been penalised in race, for something which occurred out of the race. The first time with a double penalty of this kind. That area of the rules has always been open to interpretation. Not so here.

      So yeah, after the last two races in Italy, and here now in Russia, Hamilton has every right to feel something’s not quite right.

      Still it all made for an ‘entertaining’ race.

      Also after the flack Bottas was apparently getting on social media, he kind of deserved to show what he can do. After the tire selection issues with Hamilton forced onto softs, the race was always going to favour Bottas.

      1. This is a first. As Toto after, first time a driver has been penalised in race, for something which occurred out of the race.

        Schumacher once got a black flag for briefly overtaking Hill on the formation lap before letting him through again.

        1. 10-4 on the Black Flag for Michael re: “overtaking” Damon on formation lap … was SO bizarre … how about Senna in Japan for not re-entering the course where he left it (woulda req’d going back against race traffic thru the bollards/barriers. Not like the French jefe was no protecting Prost or anything …

      2. Penalties for Engine change, gearbox change etc. effect startposition and thus are served in the race for something that happened outside of the race. Furthermore 2 infringements so 2 penalties.

        Can’t see what’s wrong with the stewards judgement. Lewis is a great winner but a very sour loser

    2. If you honestly think there is no biased decisions happening when it comes to penalties, you’re deluded at this point. Judging by ex F1 drivers reactions they seem to be of the same opinion of these penalties being placed to try and spice things up making a complete joke of the “sport”. If that wasn’t bad enough mid season rule changes clearly aimed at trying to stop one team, if you think this is normal in any sport then I just don’t know what to tell you

      Here’s one beautiful example from today’s race ttps://www.reddit.com/r/formula1/comments/j0sz2m/leclerc_no_penalty_vs_hamiltons_penalty/

      1. I could not agree more. Someone needs to police the FIA.

  3. The god complex continues.

    1. +1000

  4. PIT: You got time penalty.
    HAM: Anything to slow me down.
    RIC: I’ll drive faster.

    1. That’s the attitude.

      Should they have equal opportunities…

    2. Shows the class difference between the two. Never own up to his mistakes. Such a whiner

      1. Sure does mate. One is a 6 times world
        Champion and the other a lovely bloke

    3. Ric’s and Hamilton’s penalties have different outcomes.
      Stoping in the pits is way much worse than having the time added.

      1. Waiting 10 seconds for leave the pits after your tire stop is exactly the same as adding 10 seconds to your time…. It adds 10 seconds to your time. He didn’t make a special stop for the penalty.

    4. I loved Daniels reply to that, i was expecting a moan but the “ok copy ill drive faster to make up for it” was just sooooo good. class act!

      1. Was it though? That implies he wasn’t driving fast in the first place? No?
        Everyone likes RIC, me included, but what will “likeable” count for when he leaves F1 as an also ran? I’d rather leave as the most successful driver ever and be disliked. Schumacher was quite happy with that tag. Think Verspappen would take wins and WDCs over likes as well. These guys are all born winners. Dan RIC is a nice guy that can drive a car fast. Still… least he will get lots of Xmas cards 😂

        1. You must be new to F1. The drivers aren’t driving flat out the whole race. It’s not possible to do qualifying laps every lap, for reasons of tyres, engine preservation, fuel consumption, mental fatigue…

          Ricciardo is a multiple GP winner, so already beyond many, many “also rans”.

          Using your logic, Verstappen is also an “also ran”, and we all know that couldn’t be further from the truth.

        2. Danny Ric isn’t a born winner?
          Ok, I’ll take your word for it that Danny Ric isn’t a born winner
          You obviously raise a very good obvious point that he is an “also ran”
          Danny Ric definitely isn’t a born winner, he’s a driver who “also ran” in F1

    5. Ahh you seriously comparing the two. One needlessly locked up over taking his team mate who slowed down for him, and so embarrased wanted to make up for his mistake.

      The other was penalised for doing his practice starts, outside of the actual race, further down the lane as instructed by his team.

      Of course there reactions are going to be different. Come of it!

  5. Mr Paranoia is starting to appear. I guess that’s the natural progression of his personality.

    Any sensible person would consider that a very poor place to stop for a practice start.
    They allow it at Brazil because it’s impossible to do it in the pitlane.

    1. Not so much paranoia. More shooting off the mouth before thinking….

    2. He’s got the Kanye West syndrome. Thinks he’s above everyone else. Like a god or something. And when he gets penalized for breaking the rules, he blames some sort of a conspiracy against him.
      I actually used to like Hamilton when he got into F1. Defended him. But he’s a completely different person nowadays.

      1. +1

        There used to be a Sky Sports channel ident where Hamilton celebrated with Kovalainen.

        Haven’t seen similar with his current Finnish team-mate, which says something…

        Hamilton [or the team] interpreted the practice start rule. Incorrectly.

      2. I’m sure he’s gutted to have lost your support 😂

  6. Usually drivers are complaining about other drivers or their car after the race. But Mercedes is so superior that their drivers can’t do either. Bottas is complaining about massive bees and Hamilton about mysterious “them”.

  7. I understand that they didn’t mean to break the rules, or think it wasn’t a major infraction, but come on, it’s hard to believe this was somehow a malicious anti-Lewis role, especially when they made such a big deal about Lewis matching Schumacher before the race with a graphic and everything. I bet they had something set aside like they did when they gave him Senna’s helmet, too.

    1. You know? I partly think this is top-notch material for the Netflix show.
      And in this GP the show’s recording set happened to be with Mercedes. They may name this chapter under “Rehearsal”.

  8. Lewis’s frustration is understandable, even though with all the winning he’s having, one would expect him to be more gracious in these situation. Even said that, they can only blame themselves… Mercedes and Lewis need to stop making these operational errors, instead of hiding behind conspiracy theory.

    1. This would be my take too. Understandable frustration and with the way the FIA has been in the past sort of see why someone might entertain the thought of sabotaging him, though I doubt it really is.

      But at the end of the day, Bottas gained 11 points, and Schumachers’s record stands for at least another two weeks, while Hamilton remains a full 1-2+FLAP ahead in the WDC, and still has 7 (or 6 if he also wants the ‘won WDC while having to miss a race’ record ;-) races to equal and/or pass that record, so it’s not more than a minor setback in the whole scheme of things.

  9. Lewis really needs to focus more on his own mistakes rather than blaming ‘others’. This year he has been rather careless with penalties. IIRC he got two in the season opener. Then one in Monza and now two year. Rather than focusing on politics of other countries he should so what he does best i.e. Win with Mercedes.

  10. This is embarrassing from a soon to be 7 time champion.

    It’s like with Monza where he pitted when the pitlane was closed, it’s never his fault.

    All other drivers but he and Giovinazzi where able to see the light and not go into the pits.

    We heard every excuse in the book. The team didn’t have time to tell him not to go into the pits, the light was on the wrong side of the track.

    Today, instead of just admitting he did mock race starts in dangerous positions, he’s now implying that people are conspiring to stop him winning by issuing penalties. It’s quite appalling really to accuse race officials of basically being corrupt.

    I think Hamilton doesn’t know the rules.

    He was on the radio asking why he couldn’t serve his 10 second penalty after the race.

    I’m merely a viewer, but I know that you serve your time penalty at your next pitstop. If you don’t do another pitstop then the time gets added the race.

    I’m a viewer and knew what the rule was. He’s a soon to be 7 time champion that has on idea about how the rule works.

    So if he doesn’t know that rule, he probably doesn’t realise that you can’t do mock race starts in dangerous parts of the track, probably doesn’t know that there’s a light that signifies the pitlane being closed.

    1. Embarassment is the race director himself. All the weird rules and first time applications coinciding with Lewis’s 7th wdc run, the lowest profits of f1 seasons… They are following Lewis with xray visions and I m sure next race he will receive a ban/penalty for killing some bugs, or splashing water on a competitor’s car and creating dangerous situation… Maybe he will fart and they will penalise him for damaging the environment in such a way creating hazard for the drivers behind… Who knows… Its easy to make silly comments when your on your potato…

    2. Ofc he doesnt know the rules, he is the michael jackson of F1 ie has people for everything id be surprised if he knew how to tie his shoes or wipe his own butt.

      1. Hamilton didn’t violate the sporting or technical regulations.

        He violated, with his team’s permission, the race director’s notes for the weekend.

        If you don’t know that much, maybe you should follow Mark Twain’s advice about remaining silent and being thought a fool, instead of opening your mouth and removing all doubt.

      2. Interview on sky sports last year he said someone turns all his socks inside out for him as he doesn’t like feeling the seams on his feet….

  11. Glad that the Amazon cameras were there to capture the drama by the way.

    1. netflix?

  12. We clearly are not out to get him. But for his comments we believe he has bought the sport into disrepute. so have issued a further two penalty points. :)

  13. I wonder if Lewis would still able to say that if Niki is alive..

    1. If memory serves me, Hamilton said something similar in 2016, when Rosberg was in that position of winning for reasons which were beyond Lewis’ control.

  14. He accused the team of sabotaging him when Lauda was still there.

    1. I guess you were not out in the world yet by then and swimming in the ocean among the others of your kind, seems a trend when ham gets an unfair penalty, all these extinct fishes come to life with joy…

  15. If the penalties were awarded deliberately to “spice things up”, then they categorically failed to do that, as we were in fact robbed of what could have been a good battle between Bot and Ham with the alternative strategies in play.

    I’m disappointed that we had this possible battle taken away from us.

    1. +1000 This would have been a much more interesting race had Hamilton not relieved the penalties.. penalties!

  16. I thought Ferrari is going to stop him, then Red Bull…, but no, his greatest competitor sits at the table… It’s a great compliment to Lewis’ racing craft because there is no other way to stop him.

    1. But, as good a driver he is, 90% of his success is mercedes’ dominance related. He won less races than hakkinen and raikkonen before 2014!

      1. Wrong! But hey it sounded good.

        Lewis won 21 races with maclaren and 1 with Merc in 2013 = 22 before 2014
        Kimi has won 21 races in his career
        Hakkinen won 20 races in his career.

  17. What Valterri said.

    1. Thats my only issue with what Ham said. It would have been much better if he had said ‘To who it may concern….’ when asked about the penalty.

  18. When Whitting was still here. All new directives were communicated to the teams and drivers adequately and thoroughly discussed. Masi seems to take pleasure in obscuring his guidelines and leaving the drivers perplexed.
    It is one thing to knock Hamilton but I won’t be surprised if whatever new guideline there was had been issued just as the drivers were about to drive to the grid when everyone is busy focusing on other stuff.

  19. There is no consistency in the application of penalties and thus it does feel like the Stewards base their decisions on how they will affect the WCC and WDC and not the severity of the infringement

    Hamilton received two DISCRETIONARY penalties for practicing starts in the wrong place.
    Whilst the option was there to give a penalty, two penalties seem excessive. I don’t see why they couldn’t have considered it as one infringement when the fact is they were not obliged to impose any penalty at all.

    If we compare with other incidents, for instance Leclerc forcing Hamilton off track, last season, was far more dangerous than this but he was merely given a black and white flag. It seems warped when we take in to consideration normally LeClerc’s actions and any penalty are not discretionary but rather based on whether there was an infringement or there wasn’t.

    Another example, Vettel deliberately driving in to Hamilton only received a ten second penalty when this should have really been a disqualification and/or a ban. I have always felt in this instance the decision was based on Vettel still being a contender in the WDC as a DSQ at that point in the season would have more or less ended the WDC.

    Mercedes also are not blameless and whilst they are doing a great job and have given themselves plenty of leeway, they dont seem to understand the rules and this has been costly at least twice this season. Today giving Hamilton the go ahead to practice his starts in the wrong place and in Monza not knowing the pit lance rules and being unable to convey the message to Hamilton in time. I also wonder why in Monza they didnt consider sending Hamilton out without changing his tyres and could have then asked that the stewards take a lenient view that the message got to Lewis late and the safest thing for him to was continue in to the pit lane. By changing the tyres they left the stewards with little option.

    I also think they missed a trick in Q2 yesterday, surely Lewis should have tried to get in a banker on the used mediums, but instead they wasted four precious minutes in the garage when he could have had another go at setting a time that would have put him into Q3. It seems there was some complacency and they felt confident he would get through without factoring in the possibility of yellow or red flags. I know at the time i was conscious that these were a possibility and couldn’t understand why they hadn’t let him go out on the used mediuems. I gather Toto Wolff did explained he was low on fuel but, even then there was time to refuel and send him out much sooner. Had they adopted this approach there is every chance that he would have been able to start on the mediums. The mistake Lewis made in Q2 and the teams poor decision making had made it already difficult for Lewis to win the race even without the 10s penalty.

    Hamilton should have already matched Schumachers win record and could have even surpassed it today if not for the harsh stewarding and mistakes from Mercedes.

    I think Hamilton has a right to fell aggrieved.

  20. Can I just say that to give a driver a timed penalty in a race, for a incident that occurred out of the race, could be argued as illegal. Am pretty sure there is no other motoring organisation that has that rule. The correct thing was the penalty points.
    I do want to see the fastest driver win, whoever he is, but it has to be fair….that timed penalty was very unfair and borderline

    1. Didn’t Schumacher get a black flag for overtaking Hill on the warm up lap in 1994?

    2. Maybe they should have done it faster and given him a grid penalty instead?

    3. How about penalties awarded for changing an engine or a gearbox? Those are also done out of the race, but the driver serves the penalty for that in the race; they get a starting grid penalty.

      1. The penalties for a change of gearbox etc are because you gain an advantage with a fresher/newer component…(and so far they do not incur penalty points)

      2. The penalties for a engine /gearbox change is not served in the race. It is served BEFORE the race as you get a grid drop before you start racing.

        But nice try, anyway.

        1. This was already the third time this very season that a time penalty for a pre-race incident was applied later in the race.
          I have no problem with that because what else can you do when it’s too late for a grid drop?
          Immediate disqualification? That would be about harsh, don’t you agree?

  21. Oh, come on, stop whining, Hamilton, the second place you choose to do a practice start was at the end of the pitlane and the same guy that 4 years ago claimed a conspiracy about his team not wanting the championship;another 5 years ago, in monaco 11, he said he was being penalised for being “black”, when in reality he was involved in a lot of silly incidents and somehow still manager to finish 6th.

  22. Hamilton thinks they’re out to get him. Maybe they are trying to find reasons to pull back his championship advantage. But if so, choosing to do something out of the ordinary – the kind of thing we’re you’re already having a discussion with your team about whether it’s OK or not – isn’t a sensible idea. Just don’t give them reason!

    1. * where not we’re

  23. Obviously they are penalizing him for his courage in the past career of wearing a T-shirt against violence and police impunity in the USA.
    Let’s not forget that the owners of Formula 1 are Yankees and supporters of the current president, massively supported by white supremacists.
    Fortunately for motorsport fans, Hamilton is an outstanding driver and we will continue to see his great races even if they continue to bother him in this way.

    1. The owners of F1 have nothing to do with how FIA and the officials operate. Liberty Media owns the commercial rights of F1. They don’t get to decide the rules and who to punish and how for breaking the rules. FIA does that.

      1. why bother reasoning with the impervious to reason

    2. This was Alonso’s fault of course

  24. I don’t think there’s any intent to stop Hamilton by issuing dubious penalties. He may well have gotten away with a reprimand if he had only done it once, but doing it twice probably left the stewards feeling they had no choice but to penalise. And if you penalise one incident, you have to penalise both.

    I hadn’t realised until after the race it was the team who said he could go further down the pit-lane, after he asked the question. It doesn’t sound like a case where they hadn’t read the rule, but that they had a different interpretation of what was allowed. Here’s what the race director notes stated:

    “Practice starts may only be carried out on the right-hand side after the pit exit lights and, for the avoidance of doubt, this includes any time the pit exit is open for the race. Drivers must leave adequate room on their left for another driver to pass. For reasons of safety and sporting equity, cars may not stop in the fast lane at any time the pit exit is open without a justifiable reason (a practice start is not considered a justifiable reason).”

    Does this imply that the “fast lane” extends beyond the pit-exit, as far as the white-lines go? I assume it must, because that seems to be the only part of the wording that justifies penalising him, unless I’m missing something?

    1. He did his practice starts on a part of track where everyone else has already had considerable time to accelerate to a very high speed. That’s dangerous. The note implies that you’re supposed to do your practice starts right after the pit exit lights because then the other cars passing by are just starting to accelerate after exiting the pit lane. So if there’s a crash, it’s a low speed one. Where Hamilton was doing his starts, others were whizzing by at something like 200 km/h while he was stationary. That’s not safe.
      If you take the race director’s note completely literally, people could’ve done practice starts anywhere on the track as long as they stopped on the right side of the track. That doesn’t make any sense. Any reasonable person reading that note understands that practice starts should be done right after the pit exit lights.

    2. At this point I would honestly disagree, this year has been one of the most dubious so far with how penalties are being applied and rules being changed mid season. What Leclerc did to stroll was actually far worse than the coming together between Hamilton and Albon as he came from behind and was never ahead + actually sent stroll into the wall, but the outcome? Not even an investigation for identical contact, VAR may get a lot of slating in football but the consistensy and decisions are miles above anything the FIA and stewards seem to be capable of and F1 is the pinnacle of motorsport? What a laughing stock.


  25. Notice how the Let Them Race ,too much punishment in F1, crowd is silent or nowhere to be seen when its Black guy Lewi s getting punish…..where is Jeremy Clarkson,where is the warning the flag for the 1st offence….When Max was breaking rules moving on the breaking zone pushimg people off track is all ,never mind the rules let em race,no punishment then they revise rules next race…..This is exactly how black people are treated.white kids are mostly ignored for drugs while black kids are arressteed more and prisoned more…and offcourse the not racist they are just following the law

    1. You’re saying Lewis never pushed people off the track and got away with it? Watch almost any race when Rosberg and Hamilton were both driving for Merc. Hamilton pushed Rosberg off the track almost every time in the 1st corner on the 1st lap of the race. Even when they were completely side by side. And he never got a penalty or even a warning.

      1. This is an alternative rendition of events. Whatever Lewis did to Rosberg was always within the rules – which is why he never received any penalty for it, unlike Rosberg.

        If people get penalties for not ceding their position to another driver who puts himself into a closing space in a braking zone, then almost every driver is going to be penalized on lap 1

    2. @spactus – Just for absolute clarity, in case you don’t understand, this was not a racing incident. This was practicing starts before the race from what was considered to be a less than safe place. Unless I am mistaken and Lewis stopped during the race pulled to the right and started practicing starts…
      The punishment has nothing to do with the individuals identity, the punishment is for the infringement.

    3. @spactus – “This is exactly how black people are treated.white kids are mostly ignored for drugs while black kids are arressteed more and prisoned more…and offcourse the not racist they are just following the law”
      This statement need to be placed within context of all the facts before it can be considered as proof of anything.

  26. Six time champion, soon to be seven time champ. Will own every record worth owning in Formula 1. There are too many people in here who know next to nothing about racing, yet think they know more/better than Lewis? LOL. Typical.

  27. I remember when another #44, Hammerin’ Hank Aaron, was chasing the longstanding Home Run record set by Babe Ruth. Heard the same racist garbage then. The penalties were laughable, but not unexpected.

  28. The more I’ve thought about it … I think Lewis does have a point. Earlier this year red bull were using blowers to dry Max’s starting grid box. The race director’s notes specifically called out this practice and said not to do it. Max did not receive a penalty even though that was a clear black/white infraction of the directives. Lewis did his practice starts in an unusual position, but to my knowledge the directive did not say immediately after the lights, only on the right. I think the directive is open to interpretation, and definitely not black/white.

    So I think Lewis gets no benefit of the doubt or leeway in these gray cases. Whether that is because he/Mercedes is dominating, I don’t know. But I understand why he feels he is getting judged slightly differently.

    1. This is actually a brilliant point. I forgot about the leaf blowers…

    2. He got leeway here, they withdrew the 2 point penalty. So they did consider it and balanced it out.

      1. You do realize you are arguing that the stewards realized they judged Lewis too harshly and did all they could do to remedy it. They can’t give back the 10 seconds, so the 2 pines was the best that could do. So I think in your rush to slam Lewis, you inadvertently supported him.

        1. @sidziner – No, you read what you want. Initial penalty too harsh, so adjusted, so as not to cause him to miss a race.
          I am pretty sure that never in the past has any other driver been too harshly penalized, it is only Lewis that they are out to get…

        2. @sidziner – Oh, and fined the team instead, maybe they felt it unfair to only punish Ham?

          1. @malrg – ha ha ha. nice attempt to deflect and distract. you still haven’t addressed my point. Max didn’t get a penalty earlier this year with a clear violation of the race directors start instructions. Yet, Hamilton got 2 5-second penalties for a more ambiguous violation of the race directors start instructions. That is clearly a different treatment of the two drivers, thus supporting Hamilton’s claim that he gets different treatment.

            As to your point, I would argue that the 2 point penalty was rescinded due to the complaints from other drivers (Max, Vettel, Leclerc, Ricciardo, etc.) about getting penalty points for this infraction. The stewards realized that they were getting called out on it by other competitors and the press, and had to do something to staunch the bleeding. It had nothing to do with giving leeway to Hamilton.

            Note, I haven’t argued Hamilton didn’t deserve a penalty. All I am arguing is that Lewis has a valid point about getting treated differently. I’m not going to speculate on why.

            So what is your response to why Max didn’t get a penalty earlier in the year for the clear violation of the race directors instructions around starting? waiting patiently for your viewpoint on that …

          2. @sidziner – Nothing to say about your Max Question, did not see it.
            My response is about your stating that Lewis is treated differently, which is absolute rubbish. Every sanction that gets handed out or not gets questioned and argued about right or wrong, but when it is Lewis that gets the sanction, suddenly it is personal and only applied because it’s him…give me a break.

          3. @sidziner – You do realise that I am not actually arguing that the sanction was right or wrong? You and me both are not qualified to judge that, I am only arguing against the childish ‘I’m being picked on’ cry, sob, sob.

          4. @mcg – well apparently neither of us is arguing whether the penalty is right or wrong. However, I think evidence clearly indicates that Hamilton was treated differently. With the drying incident mentioned before. But even more so with the recent revelation that Leclerc did the EXACT SAME INFRACTION of doing a practice start outside the designated area at SPA. Leclerc got no penalty. Lewis got 2 5-second penalties and 2 license points. The 2 separate penalties were applied because 1 was for the practice start, the other was not maintaining constant speed in the pit lane (according to the stewards). Leclerc did both of those. The points for Lewis were later rescinded due to driver feedback (or whatever reason you want to argue). But still, the book got thrown at Hamilton, plain and simple. Leclerc and Max got nothing even though they both violated the race directors start instructions. I mean in the face of the evidence, how can you argue he wasn’t treated differently? I don’t know why he was treated differently (I can speculate), but he clearly was treated differently.

  29. So merc wins again really is getting a bit boring and Lewis still throwing his toys out the pram

  30. A lot of comment here about the stewards ETC getting things wrong or not (conjecture and objective views from people outside of the stewardship). Which is not what the article is about, the article is about Lewis essentially claiming that he is being singled out and targeted, which is rubbish and childish.

  31. Hamilton is clearly rattled, and Bottas is clearly energized. The momentum has swung, and the championship is opening up nicely.
    Anyone who thinks that Lewis did nothing wrong should watch a replay of his practice starts: the delta v behind that blind corner was very high and very dangerous. Anyone who actually read the stewards directives would have not have expected a car to be stopped at this place. He was lucky not to get a few points on his license (surely not special treatment?).

    1. Brenton Vogelsang
      29th September 2020, 3:58

      @ferrox-glideh: Exactly. It was a very dumb place to attempt a standing start practice — at the blind exit point of the Pitlane where cars at reaching TRACK EXIT SPEED. And Lewis knew to “question it” of Bono, when he was given instruction to do so. He must of known it was a bit of a strange call from Pit. Race drivers of professional level know what is SAFETY problematic for them, and others.

Comments are closed.