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F1 Today – 11/06/2019

Ferrari announces appeal Vettel’s penalty

Ferrari has announced they will appeal the penalty given to Sebastian Vettel which cost him victory at the Canadian Grand Prix. The German was awarded a five-second penalty for forcing Hamilton off the track and re-joining unsafely.

Following the race, Ferrari suggested that they will appeal the stewards ruling should new evidence come to light. Ferrari’s team principal Mattia Binotto said “I don’t think he could have done things differently, which is why we have decided to appeal the stewards’ decision. But, Ferrari has not yet elaborated on their exact plans.

Last season Williams lost their attempt to overturn Sergey Sirotkin’s penalty from Baku, but the case was thrown out because their evidence was deemed not to be new or significant. Like time penalties, grid penalties cannot ordinarily be contested.

Ferrari has until 20:00GMT on Thursday to launch the appeal. Binotto says that there was no intention by Vettel to run Hamilton off the road and that he had right of way allowing him to maintain position.

Binotto added “The crowd have their opinion today and not only the crowd, whoever you may ask. We are really disappointed what happened and there have been very similar situations in the past as well that have not been judged as today.”

These are the facts – Vettel forced Hamilton to take avoiding action after running over the grass, which was deemed to be unsafe by the stewards.

Ferrari argues that Vettel is the moral winner and won the race on the track.

Vettel was angry and missed the penalty and initially missed the usual top-three formalities in parc ferme after the race, before returning to switch the first and second position marker board in front of Hamilton’s Mercedes.

“I wouldn’t be happy sitting in the grandstands seeing that for 70 laps there was a fight on and then you blow the fight by a decision like that,” an unhappy but calmer Vettel told reporters several hours after the race.

 

Hamilton urges Vettel to stay

Lewis Hamilton says Sebastian Vettel is the driver he most enjoys racing against in Formula One, urging his Ferrari rival to “stick around.” The two men have dominated the sport for the last decade taking eight of the last nine championships between them.

Vettel was livid at his time penalty for forcing Hamilton off the track as they fought for the lead. while Vettel expressed his anger with the decision, there was no animosity among the drivers: with Hamilton shepherding the German on to the top step of the podium with him, before Vettel stepped in to say the crowd should not boo the world champion.

After the race, Hamilton stood by his verdict saying he was forced to take avoiding action so there wasn’t a collision. He had warm words when speaking to Sky Sports, “We’ve had a lot of years racing together and there’s probably no one that I enjoy racing with on the track more than him.”

“I always relish opportunities to battle like we’ve had today and the previous years and they’re really memories that I will always cherish and I hope there are many more, so stick around.” Vettel’s weekend began with him dismissing speculation he could retire from the sport at the end of the season.

After rewatching the incident, Hamilton said his view was unchanged. But the world champion did concede he probably would not have acted any differently had he been in Vettel’s shoes. Saying “What I can say is if that I was in the lead and made a mistake and went wide I would probably have done the same thing.”

“It happens so quick and you’re just trying to hold your position. But, when I say I’d do the same, I’d have tried to squeeze him too. That’s ultimately what happened and so my opinion on that has not shifted.”

 

Magnussen’s apology for radio rant

Kevin Magnussen apologised to Haas immediately after the Canadian Grand Prix for the radio message that led to a slap on the wrist from team boss Guenther Steiner.

During the closing stages of the race, the Dane running two laps down told the team, “This is the worst experience I have ever had, in any race car, ever.”

Magnussen was forced to start from the pit lane following his crash in qualifying. His race engineer Gary Gannon was quick to remind Magnussen of this before Steiner stepped in to tell him to stop complaining.

Gannon said “None of us are happy about this pace. The guys stayed up all night to fix the car so let’s bring it home.” Steiner then interjected: “For us, it’s also not a nice experience, it’s enough now, that’s what it means. Enough means enough.”

At the end of the race, as he returned to the pit lane, Magnussen apologised to the team. Saying “Guys, I’m sorry, I know you’re just as frustrated as I am, sorry, and the guys in the garage, big apologies, you done great, as always.”

Steiner explained after the race he intervened to try and stop the discussion over the radio, saying it didn’t need to be debated in public while accepting Magnussen was frustrated.

Magnussen added, “After the race, I don’t know if he explained it, he didn’t mean to be critical, he just tried to explain a situation that this was a bad situation, but not blaming anybody.”

“When you’re on the other side of the radio, you don’t know that. Maybe I could understand it, but the guys do not know, because they don’t know the full story. He apologised to everybody, which is something a grown-up does.”

Most of his frustration came from the re-build and the teams choice to go for an aggressive setup. He added, “It wasn’t a conscious choice to make the car worse, the choice was to try to make it better, and it didn’t work.”

 

F1 needs better ways of explaining penalties

F1 Managing director for motorsport and technical Ross Brawn says the sport needs to look for better ways of explaining penalties.

Many fans and commentators have been annoyed by the decision to hand Sebastian Vettel five-second penalty for rejoining the circuit in an unsafe manner and forcing Lewis Hamilton wide after he ran across the grass at the first chicane on lap 48.

There are reports that the steward was convinced of Vettel’s guilt by secondary steering wheel movements as he came back on track. There has been no formal detailed explanation nor release of data relating to the matter.

He has said that transparency is important when it comes to explaining the decisions of the stewards, especially in such a complex sport as F1. Brawn added, “It is in football, where despite the arrival of VAR, there is still discussion as to whether a handball should be punished with a penalty or not.”

“Therefore, it might be useful to work with the FIA on solutions that would allow the stewards to explain their decisions to the fans and to elaborate on how they reached them.”

 

 Mercedes didn’t know if Hamilton would start

Mercedes says it had gone into the Canadian Grand Prix not knowing if Lewis Hamilton would start the race because his car was in ”million bits” before the race.

Hamilton claimed his fifth win of the season and his seventh win in Montreal, following a race long battle with Sebastian Vettel. Vettel may have won it on the road but was dropped to second because of a time penalty for an incident with Hamilton.

Now Mercedes CEO and team principal Toto Wolff says replacing the hydraulic system on Hamilton’s car added last-minute drama to a weekend that was already proving challenging. He told Motorsport.com, “What looks to be a victory was a very tough weekend for the team behind the scenes. We had a car that was in a million bits because of the hydraulic leak.”

“We weren’t sure whether we could race it, whether it would finish the race. Then half the team was suffering from a flu, which nobody sees. It was just a matter of pushing through.” On Saturday Lance Stroll suffered a blow up during third practice, and that caused some concerns for the engine manufacturer, although no more concerns were caused.

Wolff said he was given additional stress late on as Hamilton pushed to try to overtake Vettel despite knowing he only needed to be within five seconds of the Ferrari to win.

Adding “I think he wanted to make a point that he would have been able to overtake him on track and say ‘I’ve won the race on track’. Rather than win with the five-second penalty.”

 

Paris summit to break the deadlock in 2021 rules

The FIA has summoned all team principals and technical bosses for a summit in Paris on Thursday in an attempt to break the deadlock over the 2021 rules.

Discussions in Montreal aimed at resolving some of the team’s concerns about the regulations resulted in no resolution. Teams voiced a number of concerns about the changes and there is a growing consensus to delay finalising the 2021 changes until later this year.

While the delay now extends beyond the technical regulations to the sporting and financial regulations. The teams haven’t agreed on wholly to the delay, with Renault, in particular, sceptical about moving away from having things sorted by the end of this month.

The French manufacturers’ concern that if the rules aren’t agreed soon the top teams could time out matters to stop there being such a dramatic change to the rules as originally anticipated. But the rules need to go to the World Motorsport Council on Friday, as that is the last real chance to agree to the changes.

The FIA’s Sporting Code says any substantial change to the 2021 regulations needs to be approved by the end of this month. Beyond that moment, only unanimous support can change things.

If the June deadline is missed the changes risk not happening a tall or being pushed back until 2022. Unless a unanimous agreement can be agreed on a new deadline.

The day before the WMSC meets the FIA has called a meeting between themselves, Liberty Media, the teams and Pirelli as well as the possibility of GPDA for the first time to hammer out an agreement.

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto thinks it is right that the idea of postponing the regulations until later this year is accepted. He told Motorsport.com “On the principle and objective, we are all on the same page and have been there since the very first time. But time was running out and I think that we are late on the milestones.”

 

Norris “mystery” suspension failure

McLaren says they are still investigating the “mystery” of what caused Lando Norris’s suspension failure which caused his retirement from the Canadian Grand Prix.

The Bristolian was running ninth having been past by Max Verstappen when he suffered the failure under braking at the final chicane. He then pulled to a halt at the end of the pit straight with the wheel askew and flames visible around the right rear corner.

Earlier on that lap, he had run wide at the chicane, which was possibly the first sign that he had an issue. Explaining what happened, Andreas Seidel says the reason isn’t yet clear, but said “We had an overheating rear with a mechanical failure, but we still have to find what the reason is, we don’t know yet.”

“We just saw that temperatures suddenly went up, the brakes went long as well, and we saw that he was going wide, which is where it started to happen.” Norris also said that everything was fine.

Adding “They said the brakes were getting a bit warm, but apart from that nothing obvious. They didn’t tell me I had to stop and they couldn’t see what was happening. It just happened and that was it.”

Norris initially believed it was a puncture, but he didn’t hit anything. He believes his earlier mistake might have been the initial cause, and that going into the corner he knew he was going to lock up.

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Jack Fielding
Jack is responsible for the day-to-day running of Formula One Vault. He brings you all the brilliant content. Has an obsession with all things Formula One and anything with an engine.

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