Penalty for Maldonado, Hamilton gets reprimand

2011 Belgian Grand Prix

Pastor Maldonado, Williams, Spa-Francorchamps, 2011

Pastor Maldonado, Williams, Spa-Francorchamps, 2011

Pastor Maldonado has been given a five-place grid penalty for hitting Lewis Hamilton’s car during qualifying.

The stewards handed Hamilton a reprimand for his involvement in the incident.

Both drivers were found responsible for ‘causing a collision’ with the other driver and were penalised under article 16.1 of the sporting regulations.

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409 comments on Penalty for Maldonado, Hamilton gets reprimand

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  1. fordsrule (@fordsrule) said on 28th August 2011, 4:20

    I thought I would wait until this decision the be made before I made my opinion. After the result I think it is way to lenient, I am a Hamilton fan so I might be a bit bias but you just cant move over like that. I too thought that Maldonado should of been banned for at least this race but I this is what I expected. I wonder what Frank would of said to Maldonado after…

  2. wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 28th August 2011, 4:36

    Hamilton did nothing wrong in his flying lap but I think it was him that moved towards right in the slowing down lap? Why was Pastor have the penalty for? Mansell shouldn’t be in the steward anymore from now on.

  3. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 28th August 2011, 5:37

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qek88QxYbW0&feature=related

    Looking at the replay of the Bus Stop, I actually think that what Hamilton did was really rather selfish. Pastor Maldonado was slow into the Bus Stop, but Hamilton’s lunge was an attempt to get an extra lap in – and that was ultimately foolhardy, because Heikki Kovalainen (ahead of Barrichello and Maldonado) didn’t even make it.

    Maldonado qualified in 16th, with a time of 2:08.106 on his final lap. But in the drying conditions, he probably stood a chance at beating Barrichello (2:07.349) and Adrian Sutil (2:07.777). However, the video above clearly shows Hamilton forcing Maldonado to run wide out of the Bus Stop; even Martin Brundle and David Coulthard pointed it out. This probably would have cost Maldonado a few tenths of a second, and potentially robbed him of 14th place on the grid.

    Now, I’m not saying I agree with what Maldonado did coming out of La Source. But I think Hamilton’s move at the Bus Stop was very selfish. If he hadn’t set a lap time by then, he probably would have made Q3 even if he had been held up by Maldonado. His lunge for the line was ultimately pointless, and what’s more, it pushed another driver out of the way, (possibly) robbing him of a better grid position.

    So I can understand why Hamilton got a reprimand. The dive into the Bus Stop was as unnecessary as it was fruitless, and clearly the move that inspired Maldonado to sideswipe him. Hamilton simply did not respect the right of another racer to set a competitive lap time. It was a “me first, me first!” moment, and I really have no sympathy for him.

    • Blog Raider said on 28th August 2011, 6:20

      Selfish? yes, all drivers are in it for themselves and their own teams!!!

      Pointless? no, he had to make the cut to Q3 and wouldn’t have if he decided to slow down. It was do or die and it worked. Otherwise what’s the point?

      Force Pastor offline on entry? I think you will find that Pastor did that all too well by himself!!!

      From your previous posts, I get that u and Australian law enforcement don’t like Hamilton, point taken.

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 28th August 2011, 7:27

        Pointless? no, he had to make the cut to Q3 and wouldn’t have if he decided to slow down. It was do or die and it worked.

        And at the expense of another driver being able to set a competitive lap time of his own. How is that sporting at all?

        Force Pastor offline on entry? I think you will find that Pastor did that all too well by himself!!!

        Re-read my post – I never said he forced Maldonado off-line going into the corner. I said he forced Maldonado wide coming out of it. If you look at the video, there is an aerial shot of them coming out of the Bus Stop. There is clearly a dry line forming. However, Hamilton barges in and forces Maldonado to run wide on the exit, out onto the wet track.

        From your previous posts, I get that u and Australian law enforcement don’t like Hamilton, point taken.

        It’s not that I don’t like Hamilton. I have no issue with him; I don’t particularly like him, but I don’t particularly dislike him, either. No, the people I have trouble with are Lewis Hamilton’s fans, who seem to expect that there should be one set of rules for Hamilton and one set of rules for everyone else – and when Hamilton gets a penalty, they whinge about “inconsistency” among the stewards. Take Monaco, for example: Hamilton got a penalty for his tangle with Massa at the hairpin, and according to Hamilton’s fans, the stewards were out to get him. But they ignored the fact that Paul di Resta did exactly the same thing at the same corner and got exactly the same penalty.

        Whether or not Hamilton’s move on Maldonado was justified or not remains to be seen. But it was clearly the antecedant that inspired Maldonado to take a swipe at him. Maldonado clearly felt that Hamilton’s move robbed him of a better lap time, and so decided to make his feelings known. If Hamilton hadn’t made the move, Maldonado wouldn’t have attacked, and we wouldn’t be having this conversation. Ergo, Hamilton deserved a reprimand for (unwittingly) provoking Maldonado.

        Or do you think Maldonado is so unstable that he just goes around attacking people because he feels like it? If so, a) why hadn’t he done it before, and b) how did he ever get to become a racing driver?

        • Blog Raider said on 28th August 2011, 8:10

          the point is, Pastor left the door open and Hamilton took it fairly, with a bit of a brush, no harm done. on exit LH is ahead, Pastor has to give way or cause an avoidable collision (you do remember Lewis got punished for not giving way to the car ahead causing incidents numerous times? last time with Pastor right? LH had no way of knowing if his previous time would be good enough to go to the next round in the dying seconds(Button anyone?), so had to push! I dont think you give allowances for the pressure experienced by these guys. oh and I never commented on the mental aspects of Pastor, I will now, he lost it! I have been around this site long enough to know you never admit defeat on this blog, enjoy the race!

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 28th August 2011, 8:19

            I dont think you give allowances for the pressure experienced by these guys

            And like I’ve already said, “I was under pressure to make it into Q3″ is not a good enough excuse for compromising another driver’s lap.

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 28th August 2011, 7:56

        I get that u and Australian law enforcement don’t like Hamilton

        Also, when Hamilton was spotted hooning in Melbourne, he was breaking the law. Why should he be let go, when a professional racing driver of all people should know better?

    • driftin said on 28th August 2011, 6:29

      You do know Hamilton was about to be eliminated, right?

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 28th August 2011, 7:18

        His laptime in Q2 was a 2:02.823. The cut-off time for Q3 was a 2:04.692. Do you honestly expect me to believe that Maldonado would have cost Hamilton 1.8 seconds if Hamilton had not lunged at him like that? The worst-case scenario I could think of would involve Hamilton losing half a second behind Maldonado and finishing the session seventh rather than second.

        And the excuse “I was about to be eliminated” is a pretty thin justification for forcing another driver off the racing line. If Hamilton has the right to set a competitive lap time, then so does Maldonado. If Hamilton gets held up in traffic and ends up getting knocked out in Q2, then that’s no body’s fault but Lewis Hamilton’s.

        • Aventador said on 28th August 2011, 9:35

          “Do you honestly expect me to believe that Maldonado would have cost Hamilton 1.8 seconds if Hamilton had not lunged at him like that?”

          You really think any driver knows how much time they have in hand? Don’t give me math.

          “If Hamilton has the right to set a competitive lap time, then so does Maldonado.”

          Exactly. Let them settle on track who gets the chance to. Like Hamilton did.

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 28th August 2011, 9:55

            You really think any driver knows how much time they have in hand? Don’t give me math.

            Well, given that circuit is divided into three sectors, the team could reasonably give Hamilton up-to-date information about his lap time. And given that he didn’t encounter Maldonado until the final corner of the circuit, it’s completely feasible that Hamilton could have waited his turn and made it into Q3.

            Let them settle on track who gets the chance to. Like Hamilton did.

            At the expense of another driver’s lap time. That’s not sporting. Hamilton barged past Maldonado, costing Maldonado time. But if he hadn’t, he could have made it into Q3 without comrpomising his lap time.

            And like I said, if Hamilton didn’t make the move, was caught out behind Maldonado and failed to make Q3, well, that’s his own stupid fault for leaving the lap too late.

        • Simon said on 28th August 2011, 10:22

          If one driver goes into a corner slowly and offline, then why on earth would you expect another driver behind them – on a hot lap themselves – to just sit back and let it ruin their own lap?

          Seriously, it’s getting ridiculous. Moves like this, when done fairly (as I believe this one was), should be applauded in what is supposedly the pinnacle of motorsport – not looked down on for being “selfish”.

          Imagine it was 2 drivers right at the sharp end of the championship involved – one goes deep into a corner and the other, knowing they’ll have their own qualifying efforts compromised if they sit back, darts down the inside to lose as little time as possible. That’s exactly the kind of thing I want to see in F1, whether it be during qualifying or the race.

          The last thing we need is a (more) sanitized version of F1, so let’s not start talking as though that’s what we, as fans, want!

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 28th August 2011, 10:33

            If one driver goes into a corner slowly and offline, then why on earth would you expect another driver behind them – on a hot lap themselves – to just sit back and let it ruin their own lap?

            I wouldn’t. My issue with Hamilton is the way he forced Maldonado wide. I’m not talking about the first corner of the Bus Stop; I’m talking about the second.

          • Simon said on 28th August 2011, 10:48

            I can see where you’re coming from, since the aerial shot shows Hamilton stayed in the middle of the dry line, rather than on the left hand side of it (which would have given Maldonado a little more room).

            However, it was Maldonado’s own choice / mistake on the chicane that gave Hamilton an opportunity; one he was entitled to take and did so fairly. He took the fastest way through the corner, which has to be the primary consideration, rather than the positioning of other cars on the corner.

            In the heat of the moment, I can understand why Maldonado was upset, but he only has himself to blame for what happened.

    • John H said on 28th August 2011, 10:49

      Hamilton’s ‘lunge’ was to get the best lap time on that lap, not to get another lap in. It wasn’t ‘ultimately foolhardy’ because he made it into Q3 and qualified 2nd on the grid.

      What planet are you on?

  4. d3v0 (@d3v0) said on 28th August 2011, 6:23

    To: Pastor Maldonado, Marshall injuring F1 driver
    From: d3v0, a fan of motor racing
    RE: Red mist (see also: pot calling kettle black)

    Why the hell are you able to start the race? Presumably our man Nige would have seen telemetry data and a change of steering angle towards Lewis (left) during La Source (right) corner should have resulted in a much more severe infraction. A five place grid drop? Who cares? He starts 15th anyway or something like that. He could have taken Lewis out of qualifying, caused an accident, hit a spectator with carbon fibre…for what? Because he had the red mist? This isnt New Jersey rush hour, you stupid rookie. Its Formula One and you’re driving a multi-million dollar grand prix car with a team that was legendary before you were squirted in your mother’s belly. Grow up kid, or get sent to some other series where your country can pay $15 million to drive like a child. And on your way out Pastor, make sure not to permanently injure any more marshalls with your rubbish driving.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 28th August 2011, 7:55

      And on your way out Pastor, make sure not to permanently injure any more marshalls with your rubbish driving.

      When has Maldonado ever injured a marshall?

      • Aventador said on 28th August 2011, 9:39

        Dude, you have got to be kidding me. Seriously, do a bit of reading before you post something. You have Google right?
        http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/motorsport/4578667.stm

        • F1fan55 said on 28th August 2011, 10:03

          Wow, that’s amazing, I didn’t even know that happened! There’s certainly an aggressive streak in Maldonado…

          • d3v0 (@d3v0) said on 28th August 2011, 15:14

            Aggressive/reckless/stupid, agreed fully. And I dont mean to sound like a psycho prattling on about a certain driver, but that kind of action – during qualifying – is completely unacceptable. Are you able to get points on your Super License?

            Anyone else remember Schumi at Belgium going after Coulthard in the Ferrari v McLaren days? At least Schumi was man enough to meet him in the garage, instead of smashing into him on track like some playground sissy taking a cheapshot in the sandbox.

        • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 28th August 2011, 10:37

          Dude, you have got to be kidding me. Seriously, do a bit of reading before you post something.

          You expect me to be able to recall a six-year-old incident from a series I do not follow and get no coverage of, and you expect me to do it on demand?

  5. I think at the end we do not have enough information to clearly know what happened, so we need to trust the stewards judgment. Just a quick note on Hamilton and his behavior in general. This guy is very strong : he manipulates information and has a great way of communicating so (almost) everyone swallows his words. Remember Schumi was the same. Dont get me wrong, he is one of the greatest drivers I’ve ever seen, but he should evolve to get to a more honest way to communicate and behave and more people outside of the UK will like him better. When on the radio, as he knows millions of people are listening he just issues manipulation statements. Same in interviews.

  6. Pablo said on 28th August 2011, 9:34

    Maldonado no perdio la vuelta por culpa de Hamilton tenia 4 sec por debajo ya. Hamilton es el unico corredor en la f1 actual los demas son buenos chofeures, suerte mañana.

  7. I honestly think these discussions will be less argumentative if the stewards give us more information on the factors the took into consideration and how they arrived at their decision. Just like they did with Button and Hamilton at Canada. Telling us Hamilton was reprimanded gives room for asummaptions on what exactly he was reprimanded for. The move by Maldonado was dangerous and unsportsmanship and should have been given a harsher punishment considering the fact that the session was even over!. Come on! how can changing a gearbox or engine recieve a harsher punishment than such a potentially lethal unsportsmanship move? If Hamilton did something wrong, he needs to be punished accordingly and viewers told what he did wrong and why he was punished.

  8. AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 28th August 2011, 10:58

    Wow. Nearly 400 comments, can’t be far off a record?

    I’ve just watched the incident back on YouTube. Initially I though Hamilton could have been at fault but on closer inspection, Maldonado’s line into La Source is pretty dreadful so he should be more than aware that Hamilton, or indeed any other driver, is going to be poised to take advantage. Stinks of Maldonado clutching at straws and trying to retain a line he had lost.

    I fail to see why Hamilton would even get a reprimand. He did have a coming together at La Source but he would have fully expected Maldonado to yield.

    Regarding Maldonado’s punishment, I think it’s proportionate enough. He’s a rookie. However, if it happens again they should come down on him like a tonne of bricks.

    • Yep, that is close to a record. Keith can help us on that…

      I don’t think being a rookie is an excuse in this instance. Rookies make mistakes and cause problems for other drivers and that is fair enough for a rookie argument. This was a deliberate attempt to ruin qualifying for another driver and putting lives at risk. That is my books has nothing to do with a being a rookie and needs a severe punishment to send a message that if you have an issue with a driver, settle it outside the track!

  9. F1beemer (@f1beemer) said on 28th August 2011, 15:03

    I don’t know what some of you were watching but the replay I was watching, I saw Maldonado pull out come along side Hamilton turn his car at Hamilton which made Hamilton twitch away from Maldonado, then Maldonado moved just ahead and just turned his car sharply smashing into Hamilton.

    As for those of you saying Maldonado was following his racing line, The Flags were Out and Qualifying was OVER

    Stewards reprimand for Hamilton just goes to show that they are out to get Hamilton for every thing they can.

  10. Nick Hayes said on 29th August 2011, 8:28

    It’s so funny the majority of the comments try to make anyone who thinks Hamilton was just as guilty seem crazy.

    This is from james allen’s website. Note a rival boss’ comments.

    “Close inspection of the replays show that as Maldonado drives past him after their contact in the final corner of their Q2 laps, Hamilton moved to the right on two occasions, but on the second occasion Maldonado drove into him. It is for this deliberate action that Maldonado has been punished.

    One rival team boss said that Hamilton was equally at fault in the incident and his body language afterwards indicated that he felt he might be in for a penalty. He even talked about the possible scenario that he could be starting the race near his team mate, Jenson Button, who is 13th on the grid.”

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