Controversy as Lewis Hamilton hits Kimi Raikkonen in pit lane

The Canadian Grand Prix took an astonishing twist as Lewis Hamilton eliminated himself and championship rival Kimi Raikkonen in a pit lane crash.

Hamilton had been leading the race but as the field pitted at once during the safety car Raikkonen and Robert Kubica left their pit boxes before Hamilton.

But the three had to stop for a red light at the end of the pits and Hamilton, apparently not having seen it, hit Raikkonen’s Ferrari. Nico Rosberg then ran into the rear of Hamilton. Raikkonen and Hamilton were eliminated while Rosberg pitted for a new front wing and continued.

Hamilton appeared to have turned to avoid Kubica’s car and hit Raikkonen’s instead. It probably was been that he was trying to avoid the pair of them.

But the less charitable will suggest that, faced with the inevitability of hitting either car, he preferred to take out the driver who was his more likely championship rival.

Afterwards Hamilton said he’d seen the red light but didn’t manage to stop his car in time.

The stewards will investigate the collision after the race.

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132 comments on Controversy as Lewis Hamilton hits Kimi Raikkonen in pit lane

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  1. Dr H&S said on 8th June 2008, 19:53

    Raikkonen was able to drive off and park after the crash, why not get around the track once and try and at least get some points? Surely that would be better than nothing?

  2. Ratboy said on 8th June 2008, 19:57

    Did he drive off or just roll to the side?

  3. Steve said on 8th June 2008, 20:03

    Dr H&S: Look at the rear wing, obviously not fixable. Quite plain to see he moved to try and clear the area.

  4. cyanide said on 8th June 2008, 20:05

    His rear suspension looked in quite bad shape I think. Besides, rear wings aren’t easily replaceable like front wings…

  5. Nathan said on 8th June 2008, 20:06

    He drove off but he had no rear wing. I’m guessing it would have taken too long to repair.

  6. Nathan said on 8th June 2008, 20:06

    Blimey, clearly my page didn’t refresh quick enough. Ignore my comments.

  7. George said on 8th June 2008, 20:10

    ‘The less charitable’ might suggest that Hamilton chose to reflex situation, andhit Raikonnen rather than Kubica? Rather the chronically unknowlegable – there was absolutely no time at all for Hamilton to even register which car was which before he had locked his brakes and slithered into the back of the Ferrari. I’m surprised that you even gave voice to such an idea Keith!

  8. George said on 8th June 2008, 20:11

    Argh – cut and paste garbage in last post – try again:

    ‘The less charitable’ might suggest that Hamilton chose to hit Raikonnen rather than Kubica? Rather the chronically unknowlegable – there was absolutely no time at all for Hamilton to even register which car was which before he had locked his brakes and slithered into the back of the Ferrari. I’m surprised that you even gave voice to such an idea Keith!

    Sorry.

  9. Steve K said on 8th June 2008, 20:17

    Kinda new to F1, why on earth is that red light there to begin with? If the pits are open, why cant you leave them? It obviously causes problems. Does anybody know the spirit of the rule?

  10. Nick said on 8th June 2008, 20:19

    Hamilton…must have been a little excited since he was behind Rob & Kimi and tried to get a slipstream out of the pits. Great job BUDDY!

  11. cyanide said on 8th June 2008, 20:19

    Steve,
    Letting cars onto the track when the safety car is coming around with a big train would cause a huge amount of confusion…

  12. TommyBellingham said on 8th June 2008, 20:20

    The cars were coming round the track. Isn’t it to stop them feeding out into the way?

    I think Lewis had no idea who he was hitting. I think he yanked the wheel to try and avoid both cars not to purposely hit Kimi.

  13. MacademiaNut said on 8th June 2008, 20:22

    From the picture below it appears that there was enough room to the left of RAI that Hamilton was going for.

    http://www.formula1.com/photos/347×231/tvimages/2008/canada/sunpic11.jpg

  14. Dorian said on 8th June 2008, 20:24

    I definitely think it was just a plain old garden variety mistake and Hamilton did not intentionally hit Raikkonen rather than Kubica.

  15. jae said on 8th June 2008, 20:25

    What penalty will hamilton get?
    Will rosberg also be penalised? Still red when he broke his front wing by hitting hamilton?

  16. Oliver said on 8th June 2008, 20:26

    Hamilton was aiming for the space beside Kimi while braking, after he realised that the cars in front of him had stopped. Its likely those lights where green when they pitted and changed to red while they were about to leave the pits. But I still believe the team should be updatating the drivers on the tract status especially in such changeable conditions, I mean in terms of traffic lights and a busy pit lane.

  17. Frodo said on 8th June 2008, 20:26

    Well!
    I really think Hamilton shoudl shot his mouth and think a little! Lately he started acting as a F1 superhero or something like that. His mistake today clearly shows that he has a lot to learn to earn a champion’s title! i dont see any appropriate explanation for him not seeing the red light! How come the others did? Besides what the hell was he watching???

  18. Steve said on 8th June 2008, 20:29

    This’ll be interesting regarding a penalty. As was stated in Monaco, if a rookie had made that error, they would have gotten a penatly. Although the incoident wouldn’t have warranted it (to me, anyway), I could have seen that being the case.

    I’m guessing Hamilton will get away with no penalty, though, as ever, the hypothetics of if a more inexperienced driver had made the mistake had got a penalty will remain.

  19. Steve said on 8th June 2008, 20:30

    Add: By the Moncao incident, I’m making reference to Kimi on Sutil

  20. P5ycH0 said on 8th June 2008, 20:45

    Sigh. Why are these lights not bigger?
    Just make it the size of a 60″ television.

    Or send the signal electronically to the cars.
    You know, just like the indycars have in a yellow zone.

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