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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798 comments on Furious Hamilton calls penalties “a joke”

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  1. AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 29th May 2011, 17:04

    I was out of the room when Lewis said everything above but my girlfriend told me one of the drivers had said something dodgy. I instantly knew it would be Hamilton.

    Go easy Lewis.

  2. sonu said on 29th May 2011, 17:06

    He was clearly frustrated @ hit team for letting him down badly. why does a team as resourceful as mclaren keep making blunders on the pit wall(strategy), they were really amateurs today for both lewis and jenson and pathetic yesterday for lewis, but he just gave it his all today and was rightfully frustrated, but on the wrong people. He is an amazing talent, how many people would have finished 6th after starting 10 then the delay in the pits then the drive thru penalty. I cant remember any to be honest so a real disasterous day @ the office @ mclaren when they could have had a 1 2

  3. charlieboy said on 29th May 2011, 17:06

    This has been building, he had a little outburst on twitter that he had to delete. I dont think it has too much to do with attitude but looking and the interview he just looked angry.

    I like it i think he should forget being liked and flip become the badboy of F1 because its clear whatever he does his not going to please most of the people that come on here and leave the comments.

    On the race I think he got a point about other drivers. I think some drivers have an attitude of your not overtaking me or I will take you off. He and Schumi could of collided twice in this race but they are smart racers. Massa and Maldonado have reputations for taking being overly punchy in braking zones.

    • Sid said on 29th May 2011, 18:51

      Well put charlieboy…and this is but the beginning of his bad boy phase. Sadly he’ll be shuffling between the podium and the stewards offices from race to race…

      • NDINYO said on 30th May 2011, 10:05

        he will be shuffling between the two offices whether he is good boy or bad boy so he might as well do what makes him happy

  4. VXR said on 29th May 2011, 17:07

    “Lewis gets his nose up the inside,”

    It’s not enough. He has to be fully alongside before he gets to the apex. He never was.

    • Shu said on 29th May 2011, 18:16

      Agreed, can’t just stick a nose in and expect the other driver to yield. Don’t like these penalties in general though, pure racing incident.

  5. tom said on 29th May 2011, 17:07

    Hes speaking his mind, and its true. Massa blocks him be gets nothing abolsute balls. Mclaren let him down all weekend he would have won the race, even alonso thought he should off been on pole. If all haters get real man without hamilton there would be no formula 1 cos it would be plain boring Vettel cant over take for nothing. Jus remeber this guy that your hating on is the guy that is the show without him F1 would have no ratings let alone a bafta.

    • VXR said on 29th May 2011, 17:10

      Hamilton is the show? Well, he was certainly worth watching today! ;)

      • NDINYO said on 30th May 2011, 10:08

        arent you talking about him – HE IS the show for sure otherwise you’d be engaged in some discussion on where the DRS would have worked best at Monaco

    • David-A (@david-a) said on 29th May 2011, 17:47

      I don’t hate Hamilton, but this arrogant attitude amongst his fans (“without hamilton there would be no formula 1″), makes me see why people hate him.

      • MIAMIBASE (@miamibase) said on 29th May 2011, 20:10

        The Internet was around 12 – 13 years before Hamilton start racing in 2007, I cannot remember F1Fanatic having so many members or other sites I care not to mention in existence before Hamilton.

        Schumi is the G.O.A.T – but i cannot remember watching practice in his era – his greatness almost killed the sport, but Alonso eminence showed he was Human – Lewis ability to compete with Alonso endeared him to all those who left the sport when the G.O.A.T made many of todays commentators rethink there purpose in the sport.

      • dlaird said on 30th May 2011, 2:27

        No. You do hate hamilton. You constantly bash him. I bet you have defended Vettel to the bitter end with all his racing incidents. Hippocrite.

  6. quick_kill said on 29th May 2011, 17:10

    Montoya would be so proud of him.. haha

  7. Porridge said on 29th May 2011, 17:11

    He has some cheek to be blaming maldonado for that accident, he deserves a penalty for that too

    • charlieboy said on 29th May 2011, 17:18

      It was Maldonandos fault, how can Schumi see situation and concede but Maldonado turn into Hamilton. I am really confused on how people are looking at it :S

      • slr said on 29th May 2011, 17:24

        Hamilton lunged in, Maldonado had already started negotiating the corner.

        • charlieboy said on 29th May 2011, 17:36

          I respectfully disagree.

          He saw Ham on his inside and negotiated the corner by shutting the door trying to squeeze Ham out, Ham had nowhere to go so ended up over the chicane,

          Slightly ambitious yes but when you believe your supposedly driving with the best drivers in the world you would expect them to handle situation better

          • slr said on 29th May 2011, 18:04

            I’ve seen it again and I don’t think Hamilton lunged in. I still think his pass was too ambitous however.

    • charlieboy said on 29th May 2011, 18:12


      But Maldonado could of avoided and retained position up the hill

  8. Paul A (@paul-a) said on 29th May 2011, 17:11

    If Hamilton wants to play the race card, he should remember that there’s millions of black kids around this world who see him as a role model. His quali performance at Monaco was unworthy of a past WC in a very good car; his race was unworthy of a past WC in a very good car; his published remarks afterwards are disgusting.

    He can be a very, very good driver. He’s got enormous talent. But his arrogance and his ego showed his character this weekend. He’ll probably live to regret it, but maybe not before McLaren fire this outrageously immature pretender to fame.

    • McLar3n said on 29th May 2011, 20:41

      McLaren fire this pretender??
      I’d respectfully like to point a few facts you’ve got wrong.
      “His quali performance at Monaco was unworthy of a past WC in a very good car”. Are you kidding? McLaren cocked up the strategy. Completely. No banker lap and a red flag. What exactly was Lewis to do? Not to forget Massa blocking him on one of his hotlaps.
      “his race was unworthy of a past WC in a very good car” Despite being stuck in traffic for most of the race, 2 penalties (both of which should have been deemed racing incidents) and a botched pitstop by McLaren, he went from 9th to 6th. Bad race?
      His outburst may have been slightly out of control, but no part of it was wrong. The drivers he got involved with drove like jerks. I’m not saying Hamilton is all clean. But it’s not all his fault.

    • NDINYO said on 30th May 2011, 10:12

      do you happen to be speaking for the millions of black boys and girls? dont speak for people you know nothing about …

  9. Autopulated (@autopulated) said on 29th May 2011, 17:11

    Not good.

  10. Robin Evers (@robin-evers) said on 29th May 2011, 17:12

    I am huge Ferrari fan and I remember myself cheering with the crowds when I was in Monza 2009 and Hamilton gave Kimi his last podium by crashing with one lap to go.
    As a Ferrari fan, McLaren is always the nemesis. So there is some “fan-hate” attitude in me against them.

    But today, Lewis Hamilton gains my respect for an interview like this. Even though it is not the nicest, he really showed character. He stayed true to himself by saying out loud what he thinks directly, which is the exact opposite of “liegate” 2 years ago, for which he was critisized a lot and what I believe really made him think a lot.
    As a twitter follower of nearly every person involved in formula one, you can also see by his tweets that maybe he is not the brightest person alive, but he lives his life no matter what comes against him and he really likes to share his emotions, negative as positive ones.
    With Montoya and Kimi gone, there are not many more real characters left, and in retrospective I will remember a fighting Lewis more and better than babyface-dr.-marko-protected Vettel.
    Better one kind of a ****’em all attitude than no attitudes at all. I really liked it and hope nobody misunderstood the “black” joke.
    And there is some coming of age to see. He cleared things out with his father, with simular experiences, it is very hard but necessary to split somehow from your father(s protection).

    So, even though I am not a McLaren Fan , he really showed he is a human being today, and I liked that. Surely a penalty had to go out after di Resta got one in a similar incident. But he really is a racer and stays true to himself.

  11. us-brian (@us-brian) said on 29th May 2011, 17:13

    Massa got a DNF. I think that’s worse than a drive through penalty. And he never ever had a shot to get on the podium anyways. He still got points. He should be happy that he was able to get points. I could never stand M. Schumacher for his arrogant personality and demanding everything. Hamilton got added to that list.

  12. Bradley Downton (@bradley13) said on 29th May 2011, 17:14

    There’s a lot of harsh comments for and against Lewis on here. Everyone has their opinion but if you have nothing nice to say, keep it to yourself. Im a Lewis fan but some of what he said was a little stupid, the other stuff true. The race comment was a joke, hence the laugh/smile.
    I do think however the arguements on here are really a little pointless. Some of us like some drivers, others don’t, don’t just slag them off and proceed to argue about it.

  13. KeeleyObsessed (@keeleyobsessed) said on 29th May 2011, 17:14

    I was impressed with Hamilton’s move on Schumacher today, but that was it, for the whole weekend. He wasn’t overly impressive in practice, got unlucky in qualifying, and tried to barge his way past the majority of drivers, resulting in collisions, particularly on a track like Monaco.
    And those comments haven’t helped my appreciation of him, yes he’s truthful that it’s a nuisance being repeatedly brought in front of the stewards, but the stewards react to what the driver does, not the other way around. If Hamilton doesn’t want to see the Stewards, then maybe he could try being a little more calm during races…

  14. giorginho said on 29th May 2011, 17:15

    bye-bye Hami, good luck with Nascar or whatever…

  15. meadowlark said on 29th May 2011, 17:15

    I believe mr hamilton would rather dive over than around others on the track.His arrogance today truly amazed me.Whether or not you are a fan,you must truly respect his ability. I think of my father saying I am not looking for excuses, I want results

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