Lewis Hamilton escapes tough FIA punishment as F1 legend told he got off lightly

Lewis Hamilton escapes tough FIA punishment as F1 legend told he got off lightly

Hamilton’s punishment for clashing with Oscar Piastri at Monza was a five-second time penalty which had no effect on his result, while the McLaren racer missed out on points

A former Formula 1 team owner believes Lewis Hamilton was lucky not to be punished harshly at the Italian Grand Prix.

The Brit collided with Oscar Piastri during the Monza race, damaging the front wing of the McLaren. It ruined the Aussie’s race, sending him tumbling down the order and out of the points as he was forced to pit for a replacement.

The stewards gave Hamilton a five-second time penalty for causing the collision. But it proved inconsequential as he finished too far ahead of Alex Albon behind him to lose sixth place.

Paul Stoddart believes the Mercedes man got off lightly. According to the former Minardi team owner, Hamilton deserved a more harsh punishment from the stewards for his role in the incident.

“The punishment for Lewis Hamilton for his collision with Oscar Piastri was not enough,” he told RacingNews365. “In such a situation where it was so clear, it should have been a drive-through [penalty].

“It’s very difficult when you’re sitting in the stewards’ room and you’re trying to determine the right penalty. They’ve been pretty consistent with the five-second penalties, but there are times – and this was one of them – when five seconds isn’t good enough when you look at the other driver’s race.

“With Lewis it was not the first time he did it. At Silverstone we saw [Max] Verstappen in the wall [in 2021] and that was a drive-through penalty. And, for me, at Monza it was a drive-through that would have completely ruined his race, just like Piastri.”

Hamilton accepted the blame for the incident after the race. He went to Piastri in parc ferme to apologise in person, before telling reporters that he knew he had made a mistake. “I misjudged the gap that I had with Piastri. It was totally my fault and I went and apologised to him straight afterwards,” he said.

Piastri accepted that apology, and said: “The one with Lewis, he came over a bit more than he thought. The stewards gave their verdict and Lewis apologised, so nothing more I can ask for or do at that point.”

He later added in another interview: “He apologised immediately and he got a penalty for it, so I’m happy he owned up to it, at least. Of course, ideally, it wouldn’t have happened, but it’s quite easy to do in that corner where you know, we’ve seen it plenty of times. So he’s still on [his Christmas card list] there, just about.”


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