This is how I read the safety car controversy.
As Hamilton starts lap 10 he saw the safety car on his right exiting the pit lane. A bit confused he slows down, but then realises that the safety car has not reached the safety car line and therefore accelerates past the safety car. As we saw this hesitation caused him to pass just after the safety car line, and therefore breach the rules.
Behind however was Alonso, who was forced to slow due to Hamilton’s hesitation (you’re not allowed to pass under safety car conditions). However Alonso saw this hesitation as a deliberate move to force Alonso to drop behind the safety car while Hamilton sped off into the distance.
I believe that this is why Alonso was so angry, and why he was so concerned about Hamilton’s penalty. Of course I’m giving Hamilton the benefit of the doubt, I don’t think there was enough time for Hamilton to consider such a plan. However there might have been someone clever on the pit wall who could have, but the FIA have access to radio chatter so if this was communicated to Hamilton they would know about it.
Now the other problem was the time it took for the stewards to make a decision. However I would think that it wasn’t until Alonso made the complaint that the stewards were even aware that there was a problem. It must take quite a bit of time to review all the different cameras until you can find definitive evidence one way or the other.
There are a lot of cameras in F1, and the only camera that seemed to have a good view of this was an obscure overhead from the helicopter (not a fixed camera remember). I’d expect the helicopter cam would be one of the last they would have looked at.
We all know that the cars have GPS and the stwards know the exact positions of all the cars, but does the safety car have GPS too? I suspect not, otherwise the desision should have been much faster.
I think this is the most plausable explination for everything that happened. Of course others will have their own opinions.
Alonso i such a TOP driver…
( TOP = Toys Out Pram )
I don’t think GPS is sensative enough to be able to see if Hamiltons car is 50 cm ahead.
Otherwise I think you’re about right. Alonso thinks Hamilton did it on purpose, as that’s the kind of thing he would do ;-)
I’d agree with that. Alonso and Ferrari have every right to be angry about it but there’s nothing he can do. Overall the stewarding has been very fair this year and I’m sure they have a decent enough reason for why it took so long to penalise Hamilton.
Bernification, I think you’re correct. GPS is only accurate to a couple of meters, and the margins of this incident would mean GPS evidence alone could probably have been contested.
BTW, according to the FIA both the safety car and the medical cars have GPS.
While the GPS wouldn’t have been accurate enough to determine guilt, it was accurate enough to know Hamilton and the Ferraris were in close proximity to the SC, and that how Hamilton got ahead should be looked at. It’s unforgivable that it took so long, and a Ferrari complaint to get anything done.
Thread closed to avoid duplicate comments. There’s already a lot of articles covering this on this on the site:
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