Furious Hamilton calls penalties “a joke”

2011 Monaco Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Monaco, 2011

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Monaco, 2011

A furious Lewis Hamilton criticised the stewards after being penalised during the Monaco Grand Prix for colliding with Felipe Massa.

Hamilton is also under investigation for a later collision with Pastor Maldonado.

Hamilton said afterwards: “Out of six races I’ve been to the stewards five times. It’s a joke. It’s an absolute fricking joke.

“You know you can’t overtake here. Very, very rarely do you get an opportunity.

“I was quite a lot quicker than Massa, I went up the inside and the guy just turned so early and just turned into me so I tried to go onto the kerb to avoid him, and we’re stuck together.

“So it was just… and of course I get a penalty which is usual. He held me up in qualifying and I got the penalty. He turned into me, and I got the penalty.

“And I went up the inside of Maldonado and you can see on the screen he turned in a good car length too early to stop me from overtaking him and crashed into me. This stuff’s ridiculous. These drivers are absolutely fricking ridiculous, it’s stupid.”

Asked why he has had so many penalties he joked: “Maybe it’s because I’m black – that’s what Ali G says! I don’t know.”

He denied it was affecting his driving: “No, it’s not affecting my confidence as a driver.

“I just think the sport is… you know, people want to see my racing, they want to see overtaking, and you get done for trying to overtake, trying to put on a show. I’m trying to make a move.

“Fair play if I really feel I’ve just gone too late and hit someone, I put my hand up and realise, OK, I really have caused an incident and been the stupid one, but it’s not the case.

“I’ll just try to keep my mouth shut and enjoy the rest of the season which, I’m sure, is going to be an interesting one, but as you can see he’s walking away with it.”

He denied the result has ended his championship chances, saying: “No, it’s never too late, but it’s not looking great.

“I gave it my all today and the team did a great job to get the car back out and get it fixed for the last few laps.”

Update: Martin Whitmarsh says Hamilton has spoken to the stewards following his outburst: “Immediately after the race he was very down, and during a post-race TV interview he made a poor joke about his penalties that referenced Ali G.

“However, I?m pleased to say that he chose to return to the track a little while later to speak to the stewards about the joke. They accepted his explanation.”

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804 comments on Furious Hamilton calls penalties “a joke”

  1. kevmscotland said on 29th May 2011, 16:19

    I’m a huge mclaren and hamilton fan, I to a certain extent feel robbed after this grand prix with regards to the team closest to beating red bull, also having the most terrible run of luck with penalties and screw ups, but lewis drove a shocking race here.

    I’m gobsmacked he still came away with a P6, but qually he clearly cut the corner, and the red flag was a shame in qually.

    race wise tho, he just tried to tank his way through.
    It was really disappointing to see.
    Even the massa incident had me questioning wether the tunnels the right place to be pushing as we’ve seen before cars career off in the tunnel ( Rosberg last yar wasnt it?)

    but yeah, Di resta did a similar thing and got a penalty, and in the post race interview took full responsibility. Its a shame lewis who seemed to develop so well last year, has gone back to year 1 again.

    • njw said on 29th May 2011, 16:57

      I really like DiResta, but he went storming in. Massa left the door open entering the hairpin, and Lewis made the move. He was well upside Massa when Massa took a late move on Webber in front, turning in to undercut Webber. Where was Lewis going to go? He took avoiding action by mounted the pavement. But at that point they’re all on full steering lock – it was only ending one way. That was a racing incident for me.

    • Nigelstash (@nigelstash) said on 29th May 2011, 19:23

      Not sure what you mean about the tunnel. Lewis had the line. Massa was on the marbles. Massa didn’t have to push but he is a ‘racing driver’ so he did.

  2. taurus (@taurus) said on 29th May 2011, 16:19

    Good on him, nice to see a driver speaking his mind rather than media-robot speak.

  3. Jolerto said on 29th May 2011, 16:19

    No, Lewis, you’re the “frickin” joke.

    • T-Money said on 29th May 2011, 16:23

      no bro your a joke. like you wouldn’t be annoyed if you tryed your best and still some crap racer who cant even overtake was winning by luck all the time

      • Jolerto said on 29th May 2011, 16:27

        So it’s Vettel’s fault for being on pole/having a nice package/letting the car race itself, yea i’m the joke.
        I meant that after smacking into an other car while not having the up on him, you still comment, and who you comment ? the referee… yea right, dude his obligation is to drive and race and let the marshals do their part.

        • Elliot Horwood said on 29th May 2011, 16:30

          Vettel was on Pole because of a Red flag, vettel won because of a red Flag.

        • T-Money said on 29th May 2011, 16:31

          what the hell did you just say. can you even speak english. basically you cant defend vettel because he is rubbish compared to hamilton, alonso and kubica who are actually real racers and dont need the car to “race itself” lol

          • Jolerto said on 29th May 2011, 16:35

            You are miles off… also learn your English, with things like “your a joke” (my joke ?)

          • T-Money said on 29th May 2011, 16:41

            fine you’re a joke. at least the sentence made sense unlike yours which was just jumbled up words

    • Elliot Horwood said on 29th May 2011, 16:24

      No Jolerto your the joke

  4. luchogv (@luchogv) said on 29th May 2011, 16:20

    FIA should check pit radio in case Hamilton said “oops i hit massa”, “oops i hit maldonado”……. Unprofessional 100%, he just lost my respect to him…

    • T-Money said on 29th May 2011, 16:24

      ive lost respect for you bro. ill be saying “woops i hit your dumb *** in the face” soon!!

      • Shu said on 29th May 2011, 17:42

        What a cowardly response t-money. Making anonymous threats on a forum that you have no intention or ability to back up with real action. Completely pathetic.

        Change your diapers and have a nap. The rest might help to clear your head.

    • dlaird said on 29th May 2011, 20:17

      Like he cares about you “respect”

      • Woolfy said on 30th May 2011, 2:09

        Well said. Lewis remains the best racer and that bothers many, why? “……black….”, I don’t know.

  5. Elliot Horwood said on 29th May 2011, 16:21

    Completley agree with Lewis, Stewards were biast to him in 2007 as didnt want a Rookie black driver to win the Championship and would rarther the Germans win all the time. Lewis is a true driver and has a great personanilty and deserves to win another world championship! Stewards are getting to harsh on penalties and preventing people from wanting to overtake, let the boys race. What do the stewards expect from racing in monaco!?

  6. Calum (@calum) said on 29th May 2011, 16:21

    Mclaren will have him back in line next time out, PR answers consisting of ‘fanatastic team’ or ‘no comment.’

  7. T-Money said on 29th May 2011, 16:21

    Yes the ham man. they be all up your face cos mans is black and tings. seriouly though vettel is probably the luckiest man alive and hamilton along with webber and alonso have been very unlucky so far this season. what i dont get is how vettle can get out of the car and pretend like he won the race on merit when it was probably 90% luck. he only got pole cos Q3 was disrupted so he was lucky there too. You could say you make your own luck but vettel did not cause the saftey cars or the red flag in qualy so he didn’t make his own luck he just lucks into things and people say how good he is. I also like how the bbc are trying to say f1 is interesting this year even though vettel has already won the WDC pretty much.

    In conclusion hamilton is right F1 2011 is a massive joke

    • Jolerto said on 29th May 2011, 16:23

      Try to remember last year, pal, all those misfortunes with Vettel, seems to me he deserved a change of luck, wouldn’t you agree?

      • T-Money said on 29th May 2011, 16:25

        yer but he still won the WDC in the end so he was hardly unlucky you moron!

        • Guilherme (@the_philosopher) said on 29th May 2011, 16:32

          Time to tidy up the troll filter, Keith…

          • bearforce1 said on 29th May 2011, 16:56

            +1

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 29th May 2011, 17:40

            +1

          • Hairs (@hairs) said on 29th May 2011, 18:04

            Yes indeed. 6 Pages of comments so far and I can already tell they’re not worth going through.

          • Burnout (@burnout) said on 29th May 2011, 22:34

            +1 I never see such blind, unceasing support for any other driver. Why do Hamilton stories bring in all the hate and idolatry? And I’m not just talking about today. Remember the Hamilton vs Brabham match-up in the Champion of Champions series?

        • Jolerto said on 29th May 2011, 16:33

          Let me get this straight… you win a championship despite having to abandon from multiple 1st positions and i am the m***n, and Vettel is a lucky pilot with no skills and determination, professionalism. You should probably run for president for the sake of it.

          • T-Money said on 29th May 2011, 16:49

            yes he is lucky he has an easy car to drive and never really does any racing he just does laps in a car that is faster than any other car and leads from pretty much start to finish. the only person that should be able to get close to him is webber and webber is a slow driver so that will never happen

        • Mads (@mads) said on 29th May 2011, 16:34

          Yes he was. He lost well over 70 points due to unreliability that Webber didn’t have. Last year would have looked pretty much the same if he had, had a car just as reliable. His misfortunes last year were outweighed by his (and the cars) speed, that is why he won last year. That was not due to luck. This year the luck is evening it self out, and a first pit stop that took 6.7 seconds is not really luck is it? Red Bull handed the win the McLaren, yet McLaren weren’t able to use the opportunity. That is not because Vettel is lucky.

          • T-Money said on 29th May 2011, 16:46

            it doesnt matter how many points he won it by he still won the WDC because he has the fastest car for 2 years running. its not like when ferrari and mclaren were always winning at least it was 4 potential winners instead of just the same winner over and over again because the red bull is miles faster than any other car

  8. ed24f1 (@ed24f1) said on 29th May 2011, 16:22

    Iwas quite a lot quicker than Massa, I went up the inside and the guy just turned so early and just turned into me so I tried to go onto the kerb to avoid him, and we’re stuck together.

    There’s a turn there Lewis, of course Massa turned in!

    Just because Schumacher caught you napping doesn’t mean you can dive inside anyone you want…

    • flyingj said on 29th May 2011, 16:28

      At least when shumacher dived up the inside, Lewis gave him room, yeah in hindsight, lewis’ move might not have been ideal, but massa completely closed the door and lewis’s wing was definitely inside before the corner, so the penalty is arguable to me, but I can see why hamilton is so upset. He went for a gap, better than just waiting for pit stops to me.

      • Mads (@mads) said on 29th May 2011, 16:38

        Massa hit Webber in that turn, so there were no space for him to go unless he wanted to bury his front wing in Webbers rear wheel.

        • HxCas (@hxcas) said on 29th May 2011, 16:56

          Yeah that’s the key point in that move. Massa couldn’t turn because he was in a little too deep and too close to Webber. Hamilton steamed in and gave Massa a choice of hitting Webber and not making the corner or taking the corner and connecting with Hamilton

  9. Sergio Perez said on 29th May 2011, 16:23

    This is why I like Hamilton. He drove like a real fighter, a champion. Never settle for less. This is what the greats do. Hamilton was closer than Diresta on the hairpin overtaking move, and I also agree, Pastor Maldonado slammed into Hamilton when he was already in next to him. I don’t consider this reckless driving, but true racing. Good job Hamilton, you’re part of what makes f1 still watchable. An extra word of praise to Kobayashi. Fantastic race! Give him a competitive car!

    • Sid said on 29th May 2011, 18:21

      Well said Sergio…hope your recovering well :-)
      That said I believe Lewis spoke his mind and said things that everyone knows to be true but are too “diplomatic” to say. It was about time he let this burden off his shoulders and speak his mind. At least next time the stewards make a penalty call on him, the call has a chance of being 50% unfair (minus the racial consideration) as opposed to 100% unfair (plus racial consideration)

      • dlaird said on 29th May 2011, 20:21

        +2 Hamilton and Alonso are the best out there. Put Kobyashi in Webber’s car ot Button’s car.

  10. Well tbh he does have a point. The entire race was a joke. I cant believe they still keep monaco on the grid. Talking about safe tracks and bringing excitment to viewers, well monaco has nothing of those 2.
    Stewards are a joke now, i cant believe that they pennilized hamilton and di resta for those attempts to pass.
    Getting ridicilous

    • curedcat said on 29th May 2011, 16:41

      thought i was the only one who wondered why monaco and barcelona are still on the calendar . Monaco in particular is a no-overtake race ,so why the hell is a race being held here ?

  11. Duchess (@duchess) said on 29th May 2011, 16:25

    His driving was the joke. And how dare he play the race card, that is downright unfunny and rude.

    And I hope he knows Ali G is Jewish because I don’t think he does.

    • T-Money said on 29th May 2011, 16:28

      what does being a jew have to do with anything?

      at least he tried to race instead of just following vettel around all day like the others.

      monaco should be removed from the calender cos its not a race track its a parade!

    • curedcat said on 29th May 2011, 16:44

      what do you mean jewish , Ali G is jewish ,so is jeff goldblum but this guys can hide their “jewishness” ,lewis can’t hide his colour ,unless he does a Jacko lol.

      go lewis .

    • David BR said on 29th May 2011, 19:31

      Duchess, he can ‘dare’ play the race card because slavery was banned in the UK, at least, a few centuries ago. Okay by you? Thanks.

    • Tiomkin said on 29th May 2011, 22:47

      And I hope he knows Ali G is Jewish because I don’t think he does.

      No, Ali G is a fictitious character, he does not exist in the real world. And I thought being Jewish was a religion not a race of people.

  12. DavidS (@davids) said on 29th May 2011, 16:28

    I want to see this interview, sounds like a classic.

    Have to disagree with him on the penalties. I think today he drove very poorly and wasn’t far from the scene of an incident. He collided with Massa during an overtake which just wouldn’t stick, punted off Maldonado who already had the corner, and was involved in the pile-up, in which he took avoiding action from Sutil which meant Alguersuari made contact with his rear, which ended up forcing Petrov into the wall.

    I think if he doesn’t receive further penalties, he would be getting off rather lightly.

    • Mikef117 said on 29th May 2011, 22:22

      “in which he took avoiding action from Sutil which meant Alguersuari made contact with his rear, which ended up forcing Petrov into the wall.”

      You said it yourself…he took avoiding action. How can you turn that into his fault?

    • NDINYO said on 30th May 2011, 6:09

      If a driver makes up places that is supposed to be good driving – if a driver DNFs when he could otherwise have used a cooler head and stayed in the points that is bad driving – that is how i have come to undestand things but you guys are getting me all confused up now!

  13. Fixy (@fixy) said on 29th May 2011, 16:29

    Fair play if I really feel I’ve just gone too late and hit someone, I put my hand up and realise, OK, I really have caused an incident and been the stupid one, but it’s not the case.

    It was, in both occasions, him the one attacking, on the inside, at tight turns when the driver ahead had already started turning. It was almost like Barrichello on Rosberg in Australia, only he started much closer to the defending driver.

  14. Toro Stevo said on 29th May 2011, 16:29

    He wasn’t held up in qualifying, he was at fault for the Massa collision, and the Maldonado collision was very sloppy driving from Lewis.

    I’m struggling to remember his penalties this year, but I can only remember the Malaysia penalty, which was rubbish. But every other summons to the stewards I recall (yellow flags in Turkey, pit lane in China) were only worthy of reprimands or nothing at all. And a reprimand is basically no penalty (or at least until that new three strikes rule is brought in).

    Watch for the Ali G comment to be blown out of proportion though.

    • The Last Pope said on 29th May 2011, 22:09

      I don’t think you understand how overtaking happens. Driver infront needs to know when to let the place go. You have to be agressive to overtake at monaco and you have to hope that the guy infront doesn’t want to brake his car by cutting you up.

      • Toro Stevo said on 30th May 2011, 2:01

        I understand how overtaking happens. The drivers, and the stewards, know even more about it than I do. And he was penalised by said stewards.

        You’re lucky if you can ever overtake at Monaco. Just because it’s difficult doesn’t mean you throw the book out to be able to do it. Massa was under no obligation to give the spot away, had Hamilton poked his nose in front at the corner then yes he should have moved to avoid collision, but Hamilton’s nose was about mid-length on Massa’s car when Massa took an early apex, which is what a defending driver should do to protect his position. The onus was on Hamilton to avoid the collision at that point.

        • The Last Pope said on 30th May 2011, 3:00

          Doesn’t matter if you are ahead or not. You don’t drive someone off the track, or drive into a position to cause an accident. Brake checking for example, thats a fine right? Its the driver behinds job to avoid the collision? nonsense.

          • Toro Stevo said on 30th May 2011, 5:40

            You don’t drive someone off the track, or drive into a position to cause an accident.

            Agreed, and the latter of those is exactly what Hamilton did in Monaco, twice. Massa didn’t drive him off the track, he did what any driver who’s in front is allowed to do, use a wide racing line. If Hamilton was in front while at his side, it would have been Massa’s fault, but at no point was Hamilton close to passing Massa there.

            And if it’s not the following driver’s job to avoid a collision, then by that logic Hamilton is at fault for the Alguersuari crash later on.

  15. I’m with Lewis and absolutely share his exasperation.

    The F1 sport is clearly schizophrenic if, on the one hand, it wants more overtaking for a better spectacle and, on the other, enthusiastically penalizes Lewis Hamilton race after race for taking calculated risks from which other drivers shy away.

    I agree though that Lewis was ambitious to expect Massa not to turn in at the hairpin but Massa’s shunt in the tunnel was entirely his own fault. Maldonado was asleep and clearly didn’t see Lewis on the inside of him at the end of the straight. It’s a shame the Williams went out but Maldonado was the architect of his own demise.

    Chin up Lewis. You will prevail if your fans have anything to do with it.

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