Lewis Hamilton wins but stewards investigate him and Raikkonen (Video)

Lewis Hamilton snatched victory in the Belgian Grand Prix from Kimi Raikkonen in the dying stages of the race.

But their thrilling duel as rain fell in the final laps of the race is being investigated by the stewards who feel Hamilton and Raikkonen may have broken the rules. Here’s a video of what happened:

The duel began when Hamilton caught Raikkonen on lap 42. He drew alongside the Ferrari on the outside of the chicane, but Raikkonen pushed him off the track

Is this what Raikkonen is being investigated for? Should he be penalised for it?

That meant Hamilton arrived on the start/finish straight ahead of Raikkonen. Having gained an unfair advantage he let Raikkonen past (which is what he should have done with Vettel at Magny-Cours) but then re-passed Raikkonen at the next corner (La Source).

Is this what Hamilton is being investigated for? Should he be penalised for it?

Later on lap 43 Raikkonen ran wide at Pouhon but regained the circuit without seeming to gain much of an advantage.

Then Hamilton came across a spinning Williams and had to drive off the circuit in avoidance. Raikkonen also took evasive action and seemed to hit Hamilton in doing so. But surely for both drivers this was an unavoidable consequence of Raikkonen trying to avoid the Williams?

I don’t think anything that happened on the last few laps deserves a penalty from the stewards. If anyone was at fault, it was Raikkonen for pushing Hamilton off the track at the chicane. But the stewards have already shown they don’t punish drivers for pushing each other off the track – as with Fernando Alonso and Hamilton at this track last year.

Do you think either driver deserves a penalty? What sort of penalty should they have?

Here’s what Ron Dennis had to say about the investigation on ITV:

First of all we don’t know what the investigation is about. One assumes it was the incident between Kimi and Lewis at the chicane. First of all, Lewis was ahead at the chicane and he got pushed wide. He definitely was in the lead coming out of the chicane, we immediately radioed him to let Kimi past. We let Kimi past and then overtook him again before the line.

Inevitably, we wanted to know whether we had actually, that was deemed to be a correction of that, and we checked with Charlie [Whiting], of course Charlie can only give an opinion, he’s not the stewards, but he gave an opinion that we had complied properly to the regulations. I would even dispute that there was any fault because we had the corner in the chicane, but even if we didn’t have the corner we let Kimi back in the lead.

Update: the stewards have passed their decision and stripped Hamilton of his win. More here.

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121 comments on Lewis Hamilton wins but stewards investigate him and Raikkonen (Video)

  1. TommyB said on 7th September 2008, 15:15

    No Spencer, the FIA realised that McLaren beat Ferrari so they needed to find a way to punish them

  2. Martin said on 7th September 2008, 15:15

    Questions (fair, factual reasoned analysis, please – I have my own prejudices here, but trying to understand it all):

    1) Who’s fault Ham cut the chicane?
    2) If advantage gained over that segment, how so?
    3) can anyone discuss in detail Trig’s comment re: Alonso/Klein Japan 05?


  3. Robert McKay said on 7th September 2008, 15:15

    It’s races like that that make F1 what it is.

    If the FIA go penalising anyone it will only make a mockery f the whole thing.

  4. Yo Lee said on 7th September 2008, 15:15

    Lewis given 10 place penalty for next race………..

  5. We reckon Raikkonen and Hamilton will both get grid penalties for the next race – Raikkonen for forcing Hamilton wide, Hamilton for gaining an advantage from his increased momentum even after he’d given the place back.

    A very subtle way of assisting Ferrari without making it too obvious.

    And you only have to look at how trigger-happy the stewards were in the first GP2 race. Perhaps smarting over the criticism the Valencia stewards got for inactivity?

    Of course, the whole thing is a conspiracy to scupper our team in McLaren’s Fantasy Grand Prix League…

  6. Dave M said on 7th September 2008, 15:16

    This was a rare F1 moment that reminded of you of classic duels like Dijon 79. And now the stewards think there’s something wrong with that?!

  7. Martin said on 7th September 2008, 15:19

    I guess I should add that the point of my questions is, aren’t these individual questions appropriate for the stewards to investigate, and on which to make findings?

  8. Rob R. said on 7th September 2008, 15:20

    Hamilton blatantly cut the chicane, and he barely backed off at all on the home straight immediately afterwards. He should be punished for that… how harshly I don’t know, but he shouldn’t be let off completely. We wouldnt be having this discussion if the runoff areas weren’t so farcically generous.

  9. qazuhb said on 7th September 2008, 15:21

    let’s hope next year the overtaking rate doesn’t improve too much… ‘cos all the races will be “investigated” then… :-( :-) :-(

  10. verasaki said on 7th September 2008, 15:22

    does the fia just hate racing these days? they don’t seem happy unless half the audience is nodding off…maybe so fewer people will notice their bad calls, maybe they’re just in leaque with red bull to sell more energy drinks but honestly, this is pretty silly.

    brilliant gamble by bmw and renault. heidfeld wasn’t even on my radar until he crossed the line and i figured alonso had just thrown 4th place when he pitted.

    fan, you may be right about why they’re looking at hamilton but i thought they get one manouvre to defend the position. he took one and sort of more than that but not incredibly blatant and i was sort of squinting at those moves too, but i think he caught himself doing it. that from a kimi fan, too.

    the cynic in me would say hmmm….massa’s little red wagon is 2nd at 9:15 am, where will he be at 9:15 pm?

  11. diseased rat said on 7th September 2008, 16:19

    It is simply impossible for Hamilton to have “increased momentum” after giving the place back. Raikkonen managed to slice in front of him after he relinquished the place, which would have been impossible at that point unless they were travelling at the same speed and the place had been given back.

    Sure, Hamilton cut it really fine, fine enough to pick up the tow immediately and outbrake Kimi at the next corner. Great move, no penalty, move along.

  12. sergio said on 7th September 2008, 16:20

    Penalty for hamham he caused kimis crash.

  13. Scott Joslin said on 7th September 2008, 16:23

    Having looked at the tape again, I don’t think Kimi pushed Lewis off, he had the line and was protecting his right to take the corner in the second part of the Bus Stop.

    No fines or penalties to either drivers, it was great racing and we should not penalize drivers who want to try and overtake.

  14. sergio, I fail to see how Hamilton caused Kimi’s crash.

  15. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 7th September 2008, 16:29

    Having looked at the video again I think Raikkonen’s weaving on the straight was questionable.

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