Hamilton gets reprimand but keeps pole

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Lewis Hamilton's Montreal pole position will stand
Lewis Hamilton's Montreal pole position will stand

Lewis Hamilton will keep his pole position for the Canadian Grand Prix despite stopping his car on his way back to the pits to avoid running too low on fuel.

The FIA have issued a $10,000 fine for exceeding the maximum time allowed to return to the pits and given Hamilton an official reprimand.

The stewards’ statement read:

The team instructed the driver to stop on the circuit causing him to exceed the maximum time as defined in Document 15 – Race Directors’ Not to Teams of 11 June 2010, 19:06

Offence: Breach of article 15.1 of the 2010 FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations
Penalty: Reprimand and a fine of $10,000

Article 15.1 of the Sporting Regulations simply says:

The stewards or race director may give instructions to competitors by means of special circulars in accordance with the Code. These circulars will be distributed to all competitors who must acknowledge receipt.

The radio message McLaren gave Hamilton told him to stop in order to avoid having too little fuel in order to give a sample after qualifying. This is required under article 6.6.2 of the Technical Regulations:

Competitors must ensure that a one litre sample of fuel may be taken from the car at any time during the Event.

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182 comments on “Hamilton gets reprimand but keeps pole”

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  1. Are you saying he DIDN’T deserve to be punished? I’m still scratching my head at the leniency. Adding in the fuel weight, he still would have been faster than Webber, but that’s not the point – the point is, he should not have gone for that final run anyway. It’s a shame, because the lap was stunning – I thought I’d throw that in before i’m jumped on and branded as another Hamilton hater. You may all call it a fair decision, but it sets a dangerous precedent. When you search for every hundreth, every thousandth, ten grand is a cheap price to pay for pole…

    1. Senna did set precedents too… we all loved him to bits when he drove Prost off and cheered for him. I revered Senna as a kid… When i grew up, well, didn’t like the idea of him all that much as a competitor. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a humanitarian and did a lot of work for people back home in Brazil and i respect that. I respect him as a person, but not much as a sportsman. Certainly not as much as i do respect Prost.

      Now Hamilton did this, some are here cheering for him :P I’ll bet a million, which i do not have :P , that a lot of people would protest if say some other driver did it. Say Schumacher, Vettel, Webber or any other for that matter :D Funnily enough i’ll be waging that people would readily run down the other car from McLaren itself if it did it. :D

  2. Hmm, wonder what Hamilton fans have to say about FIA and its stewards now. No more racist this racist that?

    If a car runs below minimum weight requirement… well, they’re not legal. However, in retrospect i can’t remember any rule which bars stopping a healthy car to preserve fuel levels and thereby weight and keeping to the rule of minimum weight, to clear any routine FIA checks. Please do correct me if i’m wrong…

    So there, all you Hamilton fans, i think it was ok, though not in the spirit of the game/ sportsmanship, but within the regulations.

    1. martin bell
      13th June 2010, 8:59

      There is no suggestion of the car having been under the minimum weight requirement. It seems, once again, that the stewards have issued the only penalty they had available, handed out for the ‘offence’ of being late back to parc ferme. Some of us are old enough to remember the sight of F1 cars regularly running out of fuel in the fuel restricted days. I, like many here, see this incident only as a slightly worrying precedent, yet another issue that needs clarification. Part of me feels sorry for Lewis, he always seems to be involved in some ‘marginal’ decisions and, on this occasion, it’s hardly his fault. A couple of weeks ago he was saying that he didn’t want to be remembered as Schumacher is, as a serial envelope pusher. Great pole lap, well deserved pole, but I don’t see the controversies coming to an end any time soon, and it may already be too late for Lewis to avoid this legacy.

      1. Hi Martin,

        Well, i’m not saying that it was underweight… but only that it was perilously close to it. So close, that the team had to radio him, radio being heard by stewards and all the world plus dog for that matter, and inform him to stop on track to save fuel. Car’s minimum weight requirement is not just for a dry car, it includes driver’s weight, fuel and oil(s) on board. In this instance, they asked him to stop, as it would have taken some fuel, and it would have possibly brought into question the overall weight of the car, which would have left McLaren in a dodgy situation. A situation mind you, that they got themselves into. So all ye Macca fans, please don’t hate the FIA. McLaren are just plain suicidal :P

        1. martin bell
          13th June 2010, 11:37

          I don’t think we have any way of knowing how close he was to the minimum weight limit, but I take your point entirely. The extension of my point is wondering if we are now going to see teams running so marginal on qualy fuel that they run out just over the line on their last lap, now that it seems that it’s ok to push your car back to the pits having run out of fuel. (or in Lewis’s case getting someone else to push it for you!!!)A ridiculous scenario of course, but stranger things have happened in F1!!

          1. You were not the only one Martin, as did Gary Anderson, who is a former tech director, now commentating on Start Sports.

            I’m impressed mate, about how we discussed stuff without getting personal. Thanks for the same…

            Reminded me of forums here about a couple of years ago or so. Yes, those of you with Flame-master 2000 scouting me out, pun is indeed intended :P

          2. martin bell
            13th June 2010, 22:32

            You know, I watched this race, for what I think is the first time ever, with another F1 fan who I don’t know very well, but was a fan of different drivers to me. We managed to discuss things during the race without getting personal and it really enhanced my enjoyment of it. So I figure that there really is no need to post in the way some do here, we’re all F1 fans after all, and in truth, you lot here are the only people that I get to talk to about the sport I have loved since 1976.

  3. The Nude Wizard
    13th June 2010, 5:29

    Everyone else carried enough fuel as per the regs, Hamilton didn’t I’m not gonna convince any one eyed DISTINGUISHED ENGLISH GENTLEMEN (better Keith? haha) haha but if Ferrari had pulled that stunt you’d be screaming for blood and calling it favouritism. I’m not debating the guys talent, but they cheated.

  4. And I don’t need someone coming along and saying “Hamilton’s good, get over it”. I know he’s bloody brilliant. I love watching him drive. But perhaps a more complex offering explaining why his actions, in this case, are acceptable would be better. I don’t care how harsh or lenient you think they’ve been on him in the past, this penalty is just not right.

  5. The cars typically burn about 0.5 – 0.75 kilo down the back straight (in my experience with rfactor :P ) so I think there’s every chance Lewis could have made it back to pits AND had enough fuel left for the sample.

    Mclaren just wanted to play it safe

    1. I suppose thats why Lewis did the first two sectors in about 1.20 minutes, because he was not going very fast, to save as much fuel as possible.

  6. Actually I would like to know the fuel consumption on the returning lap and a normal flying lap in qualification.

  7. From a purely personal perspective, Hamilton standing in his cockpit, and then pushing his car by himself was great theatre. Reminded me of Button last year at Monaco running to the podium, and Mansell giving Senna a lift back on the side-pod of his car many years ago…

    I am surprised Hamilton didn’t get a reprimand for safety for that. But glad he didn’t. Simply no point. Moments like that bring back a little bit of humanity to F1 that seems lacking these days on occasion.

  8. How many reprimends you may have before having a penalty??

    1. Jarred Walmsley
      13th June 2010, 9:29

      1 per offence, this is why Hamilton has not yet been penalised as his multiple reprimands are all for different offences, which makes perfect sense as there are many different rules and it would be unfair to be penalised for breaking two completely different rules.


      I think that once you reach a certain number of reprimands (5 or so) then you should be given a grid place drop because obviously if you have accumulated that many reprimands then you are flying by the seat of your pants and you deserve to be penalised.

      1. I was thinking something similar, Jarred. Even if you don’t break a specific rule twice, to be handed a large number of reprimands suggests a pretty lax attitude to the rules in general, which should probably be dealt with in some way.

  9. pathetic,,, it’s not right :(

  10. It’s a nice thing Hamilton showed a little comedy relief by pushing his car to the pits despite the bad things that came up about him lately in the news. Displayed the other “lighter” side of Lewis. :)

  11. I am coming to the conclusion that the worst thing for F1, is the fans. What a buch of whining……

    “Whaaaaa, he is too good and too clever. Fine him, punish him…..cuz we sure as hell can’t beat him…….”

    It was a stellar drive by a stellare driver…his team screwed up, but on here it is “Punish Hamilton”…..

    Utterly pathetic…….

    1. Well, the team can be and should have been penalized, but if a driver gets an unfair advantage, it needs to be taken away. What stewards could/ should have had done was to take the lap away (yes, flame me) and re-instated his second best lap-time as his best for the session. Now it would have possibly led to some controversy, but imagine that Lewis didn’t stop on track to save fuel and finished as P2. Now, was that so horrible? I agree that Lewis did do a better lap time, but then he also parked a perfectly healthy car on track :P FIA could and possibly should tear into McLaren once again, as they let their driver to be in such a situation. Now that’s just plain stupid on Macca’s part. Then you have the journo’s blaming the FIA (who actually act questionably from time to time) for kicking McLaren on their rear end. I mean, if you bend over and have a “kick me” sign on your back :D This time, McLaren in my books earned another free kick, not one they deliver, but one they should have been given on their derriere.

      1. Now I see, F1 fans really tend to exaggerate things! Geez… how much of an advantage did Hamilton get by not have the amount the of fuel for running down the straight? Also this is not proven at all yet, he could have enough fuel to get back and give sample.

        By taking the best lap away from Hamilton, the other drivers will get a much bigger advantage: they probably did their best lap with about one lap less(minus the staight) fuel than Hamilton.

        The bottom line is there is no regulation which stated you should get back to pits all by yourself/in time, and hamilton did nothing wrong!

        1. martin bell
          13th June 2010, 11:48

          Strange then that the team have been fined for not being back to the pits on time, if, as you say, there is no regulation for this instance. Perhaps some F1 fans, maybe even the ones prone to exaggeration, arm themselves with the facts before making judgments. That way, they know, certainly by 11.15am when you posted this, that there was enough fuel for a sample.

          1. Other teams get fined, Hamilton/McLaren get fined so what is your problem with it?

            You probably didn’t get what I meant, you guys assume Hamilton get an unfair advantage by running less fuel than the others, hence he should be penalized. However the fact is he had at least enough fuel left for a sample, like any other drivers, he did not run out of fuel, but whether there’s indeed not enough fuel to power him down the last straight you guys never know!

          2. martin bell
            13th June 2010, 14:43

            I don’t have a problem with it, I was just commenting on your statement that there isn’t a regulation (or in this case, memo) concerning getting back to the pits in time. There is. I was also commenting on your statement about it not being proven whether he had enough fuel to provide a sample. There was. Last night. I have never said that I think that an unfair advantage was gained, only that I don’t like a precedent being set of it being ok to push your car back to the pits. I was just wondering out loud where that precedent will take us.

    2. Don’t be ignorant. The driver and team work in combination. Most of us (there ARE a few Hamilton haters who want nothing more than to punish the man) feel that McLaren had a rather unfair advantage, and to penalise McLaren properly means to penalise Hamilton. This is nothing to do with Lewis as a character or a driver. Grow up.

      1. martin bell
        13th June 2010, 13:03

        Not sure why (or if) you’re calling me ignorant, and I personally don’t think that any unfair advantage was gained. I’m just not comfortable with the precedent it sets, knowing how far teams will push to gain any competitive advantage. I haven’t called for any punishment, nor do I think that LH should have lost his pole lap, which was stunning. I’m not Lewis’s biggest fan, but I do keep an open mind on all matters F1. I also feel that I am ‘grown up’ enough to hold these opinions.

  12. Have a look at the video – this is pure F1 legend stuff:


    1. It is indeed very cool.

      But “legend” – I don’t think so.

  13. Pathetic to fine and reprimand someone over this, why is there a certain time to return the car to the pits anyway after qualy? Same about the people pushing the drivers to hurry up after the race in parc ferme to get onto the podium so the ceremony can get underway in time.

    They should relax these rules a bit so we can see someone actually celebrating. Let someone show some emotion when they win…

    Look at MotoGP, what’s wrong with Rossi riding around in a chicken suit or Lorenzo jumping in a lake whilst celebrating victory?

    Some rules in F1 are way too tight and spoil the human side of the sport, I say let’s be a little less sanitized and a bit more human like it used to be a few decades ago :)

  14. Davetherave
    13th June 2010, 13:48

    IDR……….i agree, how many reprimands = 1 offence.
    And how much longer are we going to see these stupid reprimands which appear to be collected by certain top drivers who seem to keep “bending” the rules for their own personal advantage, whereas the rest just do the right thing!
    I am getting bloody fed up with it.

    1. The ability to look for every advantage is what seperates the Hamiltons, Alonsos, Sennas and Schumachers of this world from the rest. Rules are there to be bent until they are broken.

  15. Davetherave
    13th June 2010, 14:05

    Lets have a new rule…….Unless seriously damaged, all cars must be driven back to park ferme for the weigh in etc.
    Surely this would end all this squabble !

  16. ellen simpson
    13th June 2010, 17:33

    yes he should have got a grid penalty as he has cheated the other drivers at a chance at poll you look back through the other races and see how many drivers got a grid penalty for the same thing and then again in the pit lane gets away with it in there cutting of other drivers of and yet he got away with it if that was any other driver they would not get the same treatment as him.i think they need to rethink on this kinda stuff and stop having one rule for one driver and different rules for the rest of the drivers.so yes he got away with everything.

  17. Its not as dramatic as you all put it to be. Lewis wanted to conserve fuel so he started pushing. The track was pretty much empty, Fans wanted some action. That all!


  18. With the lack of on track celebrations in Formula One I thought Hamilton stopping on track and sitting out of the cockpit while the car coasted down the straight and then pushing the car was great.

    A bit like when Button had to run to the podium at Monaco last year after parking in the wrong place.

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