Driver wanted: Lewis Hamilton and Vodafone Team McLaren are in hot water again with FIA. What started out as a simple passing maneuver behind the safety car in last Sunday’s season opener in Australia, has led to a 30-year McLaren team veteran being sent home, the team and driver massively embarrassed and facing possible further serious sanctions.
The World Champion driver passed the Toyota of Jarno Trulli when the Italian went off the road under yellow flag conditions. Hamilton was instructed to let Trulli pass and race by the book while they checked with Charlie Whiting. Based on who you believe, somewhere between Hamilton getting out of his car after the race and by the time he and Dave Ryan were summoned to the FIA stewards, a plan was cooked to dip Jarno Trulli into fourth place by claiming he passed the English driver under a yellow. The stewards were simmering when evidence emerged that Hamilton was instructed to let the car ahead be Toyota, fact which both he and Ryan denied to the stewards. Their goose is now cooked.
Hamilton later apologized in a press conference saying, “I was instructed and misled by my team manager to withhold information, and that is what I did. I sincerely apologize to the stewards for wasting their time and for making them look silly. I am very, very sorry for the situation: for my team, for Dave because he has been a good member of the team for many years.”
It is hard to believe team which received a $100m fine from FIA and lost all constructors points only two seasons ago would take this risk, all for one single point in the very first race of the season.
Lewis Hamilton apologises to everyone! what was McLaren thinking?
Ferrari one two in second practice with kimi in charge.
Five place gear box grid penalty for Rubens Barrichello.
Final practice times.
Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:35.940 19
2. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.048 + 0.108 13
3. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:36.089 + 0.149 13
4. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:36.132 + 0.192 21
5. Glock Toyota (B) 1:36.189 + 0.249 22
6. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.194 + 0.254 14
7. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:36.322 + 0.382 14
8. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.325 + 0.385 18
9. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:36.519 + 0.579 19
10. Button Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:36.541 + 0.601 17
11. Kubica BMW-Sauber (B) 1:36.563 + 0.623 18
12. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.657 + 0.717 15
13. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.742 + 0.802 13
14. Alonso Renault (B) 1:37.004 + 1.064 16
15. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber (B) 1:37.026 + 1.086 18
16. Piquet Renault (B) 1:37.032 + 1.092 18
17. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.118 + 1.178 18
18. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:37.282 + 1.342 17
19. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:37.322 + 1.382 16
20. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.398 + 1.458 19