Lewis Hamilton won the British Grand Prix on Sunday.© AFP
Lewis Hamilton’s controversial first-lap move on world championship rival Max Verstappen at the British Grand Prix used to be “absolutely in line with the overtaking guide”, his Mercedes team insisted Wednesday. Verstappen accused seven-time world champion Hamilton of being “dangerous, disrespectful and unsportsmanlike” following their collision at Silverstone on Sunday. Red Bull’s Verstappen had to retire from the race while Hamilton went on to win, slashing the Dutchman’s lead in the championship from 33 points to just eight.
“So far as we are concerned, the manoeuvre that took place, the manoeuvre that Lewis did, used to be absolutely in line with the FIA’s overtaking guide,” said Mercedes technical chief James Allison.
Hamilton used to be penalised 10 seconds for the incident.
“Lewis definitely used to be considerably alongside. He had his front axle polite beyond the midpoint of Verstappen’s car,” added Allison.
“It requires you are considerably alongside and it requires that you should be capable to make the corner. By make the corner it means go round the corner and not leave the track or lose regulate of the car. Those are the things you want to satisfy.
“Whether you’ll go round the corner, in case you are considerably alongside the other car then the corner is yours.”
He added: “I did feel that it used to be harsh to receive the penalty.
“This is approximately what are the rules to do with overtaking and I did not see that Lewis did anything fallacious with respect to those rules.”
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