Red Bull Racing filed a plea to further investigate the 10-second penalty, awarded to Mercedes-driver Lewis Hamilton after causing a collision with Max Verstappen. The incident in question is the infamous one at Copse corner at Silverstone for the British Grand Prix. At the Grand Brix, Max Verstappen, leading the race on the first lap, touched tyres with Lewis Hamilton at one of the fastest corners on the calendar. The result of the touch pirouetted Verstappen in his Red Bull Racing car at 180 km/h and crash into the barriers at 51G. Thankfully, the Dutch driver walked away unharmed and cleared by medical staff after further checks. The stewards awarded Hamilton a 10 second time penalty, despite which the 7-time world champion went on to win the race in front of his home crowd.
On Thursday, Red Bull, furious after the incident submitted a ‘petition for review’ of Hamilton’s penalty hoping for a more severe one. It was discussed by the stewards in the presence of representatives from both Mercedes and Red Bull. Red Bull had submitted GPS data of both Verstappen and Hamilton’s car, GPS data drawing “various alleged comparisons” with the line taken by Hamilton when passing Charles Leclerc for the lead later in the race at the same corner, along with alleged lap simulations of the incident. In addition to a “re-enactment” of Hamilton’s lap one line at Silverstone based on a lap allegedly driven by reserve driver, Alex Albon was also presented by Red Bull.
However, the plea has been rejected by the stewards. After reviewing the information, the stewards deemed it did not qualify as a “significant and relevant new element”. The stewards also suggested that some of the information was ‘not discovered’, but created by Red Bull to support the petition to review, thus not compliant with Article 14 of the sporting regulations.
The result of it all means that Hamilton’s penalty will not be revised and his British Grand Prix victory stands as is.
— Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team (@MercedesAMGF1) July 29, 2021
Red Bull has not commented publicly on the rejection of their petition by the FIA at the moment. However, Mercedes have accused Red Bull of tarnishing Hamilton’s integrity. Mercedes released a statement welcoming the stewards’ decision to put the matter to rest. The statement further adds to accuse senior management of Red Bull Racing of trying to “tarnish the good name and sporting integrity of Lewis Hamilton.”
This weekend marks the 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix. Unlike the Sprint Qualifying format which was held at British Grand Prix, this weekend at the Hungaroring will revert to the traditional format – three 60-minute practice sessions, qualifying being held on Saturday, followed by Sunday’s race. However, the Sprint Qualifying format will return for the Italian Grand Prix later this year.
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