The stewards had no good reason to punish Hamilton and Alonso

Posted on April 10, 2011


The Stewards in Malaysia have slapped both Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso with a 20 second penalty following the pair’s lap 46 collision.

Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton have been penalised for their collision. Credit: BBC

Hamilton was penalised for making more than one defensive move, while Alonso was punished for causing an unnecessary decision.

The decision does not change Alonso’s result but Hamilton’s McLaren is demoted from seventh to eighth, promoting Kamui Kobayashi.

We should move straight past the idea that it doesn’t seem right to assign blame to both parties for the incident and go on to whether the penalties needed to be imposed at all.

This was a racing incident – Alonso made an error and clipped Hamilton while attempting a pass. Both cars suffered some damage but both were able to finish the race. It was one example of contact in a race where a number of cars came together.

Barrichello was left with a puncture after Sutil’s front wing hit it on lap three and neither of them have been punished.

Seeing the stewards changing results after races like this is frustrating, it’s confusing for the fans and it’s simply not necessary. The rules allow the stewards to put things like this down to racing incidents and that’s exactly what they should have done today.

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