Red Bull’s petition to review the penalty that Lewis Hamilton received for his part in the first lap incident between him and championship leader Max Verstappen at the British Grand Prix has failed, despite the team stating they had new evidence to present to the FIA.
The fallout from the first lap incident between the two championship protagonists at Copse corner, which sent Verstappen into the wall and Hamilton receive a 10-second time penalty, has rumbled on since the chequered flag at Silverstone with Helmut Marko calling for Hamilton to be banned and the Red Bull team principal Christian Horner accusing Hamilton of dirty driving.
Shortly afterwards, Red Bull revealed that they had hired lawyers to argue their case for the FIA to further punish Hamilton, as Red Bull weighed in the cost that the first lap incident had done on Verstappen’s car.
In the run-up to the Hungarian Grand Prix, both teams were called to the stewards to present their evidence to the stewards this afternoon, with Verstappen commenting in today's FIA press conference that Hamilton deserved a stiffer penalty whilst defending his actions in the first lap incident.
“I fought hard, I defended hard, but not aggressive, because if it would have been aggressive, I could have pushed him or squeezed him into the inside wall, but I did give him the space, and then I just opened up my corner, and when you then commit on the inside like he did and not back out, expecting he can do the same speed on that angle that I had on the outside, you are going to, of course, crash into me."
“I’m on the outside, I'm opening up my corner and not expecting him to commit, and he understeered into the rear of my car. Basically, you take out your main rival, and especially with the speed we have with our cars, we are miles ahead of the third-best team."
“We are easily 40, 50 seconds ahead in normal conditions. So a 10-second penalty doesn’t do anything. So definitely that penalty should have been more severe.”
But despite the new evidence, the stewards dismissed Red Bull’s petition, with the FIA's statement concluding that the evidence presented by the team was neither new nor significant.
“What was presented to the Stewards was not a significant and relevant new element [that was] discovered which was unavailable to the parties seeking the review at the time of the decision concerned.”
“The slides in Appendix 2 of the Competitor's letter that were relied upon as New Evidence were not "discovered" but created for the purposes of submissions to support the Petition for Review. And they were created based on evidence that was available to the Competitor at the time of the decision (namely the GPS data). That clearly does not satisfy the requirements of Article 14.”
“For this reason, the Stewards dismiss the Petition for Review”.
With the verdict passed down by the stewards, Verstappen still leads Hamilton by eight points in the driver's championship going into this weekend at the Hungaroring whilst Red Bull’s lead over Mercedes in the constructor’s championship remains at four points.