Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Interlagos, 2021

No decision on whether Hamilton keeps sprint pole until Saturday morning

2021 Sao Paulo Grand Prix

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The FIA stewards will not rule on whether Lewis Hamilton keeps his pole position for the sprint qualifying race at Interlagos until Saturday morning at the circuit.

Following today’s qualifying session, FIA technical delegate Jo Bauer notified the stewards at 6:28pm local time that the rear wing on Hamilton’s car had failed an inspection of its Drag Reduction System. Its DRS was found to open by more than the permitted 85 millimetres.

Mercedes representatives were summoned to meet with the stewards at 7:15pm. However shortly before 10pm the stewards announced the decision will not be taken until the following day as they await further evidence.

“The stewards have adjourned the hearing relating to document 18 of the 2021 FIA Formula 1 Sao Paulo Grand Prix as they await further evidence that will not be available until the morning,” the FIA confirmed in a statement.

The stewards have ordered the relevant parts of Hamilton’s Mercedes W12 are impounded overnight.

“The stewards hereby order the technical delegate to supervise the removal of the rear wing assembly of car 44 and to impound this part under seal,” they announced. “Further, the technical delegate is to supervise the transition of car 44 into overnight conditions, permitting only those actions needed to store the car.”

This article will be updated

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2021 Sao Paulo Grand Prix

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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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14 comments on “No decision on whether Hamilton keeps sprint pole until Saturday morning”

  1. The Stewards hereby order the Technical Delegate to supervise the removal of the rear wing assembly of Car 44, and to impound this part under seal. Further, the Technical Delegate is to supervise the transition of Car 44 into overnight conditions, permitting only those actions needed to store the car.

    1. Apart from the uppermost rear wing element adjustable positions of car number 44 (see Document 18), all the above items were found to be in conformity with the 2021 FIA Formula One Technical Regulations.

      FIA site:

      https://www.fia.com/sites/default/files/decision-document/2021%20Brazilian%20Grand%20Prix%20-%20P1%20and%20Qualifying%20scrutineering.pdf

    2. Cue the conspiracy theories, a ploy to fit a different spec of rear wing.

  2. What could the new evidence be, is this not a slam dunk technical infringement?

    I can’t help but feel that anyone except for red bull or Mercedes would have been given a penalty by now

    1. I’ll literally fall out of my chair if they uphold a penalty here. I think the overnight bit is a convenient excuse.

    2. My theory is that the measurement depends on the operation of the drs hydraulics which requires some technical evaluation. Or Max sabotaged it in part ferme😂

      I’m not amused they are making us toss and turn tonight thinking of this issue.

  3. That’s…. unexpected.

  4. Hmm, let’s wait and see how this plays out then. Seems there must be some valid argument from Mercedes if the FIA refuse to rule after nearly 3 hours of discussion. Can’t see Horner dropping this one either as it’ll hand Max the Championship.

  5. I was sure they were going to get caught messing with tyre pressure or something related and not what is seemingly a blunder.

  6. This is surely Valterri Bottas’ fault.

  7. This has to be DSQ right? the wing is clearly illegal.

  8. So a clearly illegal car. Only a DQ will suffice.
    Merc is trying everything to win.
    We will see a lot of attention aimed at maxs “action” to avoid being called frauds.

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