Masi Reinforces That Consequences Should Not Be Considered When Penalising Incidents – WTF1

Masi Reinforces That Consequences Should Not Be Considered When Penalising Incidents

After the British Grand Prix, Max Verstappen’s championship lead has been cut to just eight points after contact between him and Lewis Hamilton on the first lap. There’s no shortage of opinions on the first lap antics and whether or not the penalty Hamilton received was harsh enough, or even if it was deserved at all.

Crucially though, the stewards deemed Hamilton to have been “predominantly at fault” in their official reasoning and awarded him a 10 second time penalty and two penalty points to his license to take his total up to four in the last 12 months.

Despite this, Hamilton still won the race and secured 25 points along with the two he got from Saturday’s sprint qualifying event. The TV broadcast showed people from both Red Bull and Mercedes pleading their cases to the FIA Race Director Michael Masi, with Mercedes losing the argument but still scoring the most points at Silverstone.

Looking back on the incident, though, and the verdict reached by the race stewards, Masi feels that Hamilton’s penalty was correct according to the rules.

“Looking at the incident, I agree with the stewards and the penalty they applied,” said Masi.

“One of the big parts [of stewarding] that has been a mainstay for many, many years [is] that you should not consider the consequences in an incident.

“So when you judge incidents, they judge the incident itself, the merits of the incident and not what happens after as a consequence, and that’s been something the stewards have done for many years and have been advised to do from the top down – and I’m talking team involvement and so forth.

“That’s the way the stewards judge it because if you start taking consequences into it, there are so many variables rather than judging the incident itself.”

Ultimately the view by the stewards that Hamilton was predominantly rather than wholly to blame meant he received one of the smaller penalties, with the only one smaller that can be given by the stewards being a five-second time penalty.

Regardless of Verstappen’s situation, Hamilton may have avoided punishment himself had he stayed closer to the apex at Copse.

“I don’t know if [the stewards] expressed a view on what he should have done,” said Masi, “but I think having looked at it all, in their view, he was predominantly to blame for that.

“Similar to what happened with Charles [Leclerc] later on [when Hamilton passed the Monegasque for the lead at the same corner], he could have stayed tucked in closer to the apex, and that was where they found [the issue].

“I think the wording was clear as per the regulations. He was ‘predominantly to blame’, not ‘wholly to blame for it.

“He could have tucked in further, and that may have changed the outcome, but we don’t know – we have to judge on the incident itself.”

17 thoughts on “Masi Reinforces That Consequences Should Not Be Considered When Penalising Incidents

  • Roel Andersom says:

    So Masi says if you push someone from a small 10 cm high rock, it’s the same as pushing someone into the grand canyon. Same action, so same punishment. Point is, the circumstances are not the same, pushing someone into the gravel at 100 kmh is not the same as with 250+ kmh.

    • I don’t think that is quite what Masi is saying. The corner, speeds etc are taken into account in deciding if a driver is at fault and the penalty applied. However when he refers to ‘consequences’ I think he means things such as Max ending up in hospital. Simply put the penalty should be the same if max ended up in the wall or merely spun but was able to continue.

    • John Humphries says:

      That’s the rules as written and agreed to by the teams. Remember that Hamilton was at as much risk for damage in that instant as well.

      • guelfo gilardoni says:

        Be in risk yourself doesn’t make it better, almost all the incident make both pilots at risk, is not an excuse.
        Senna was deliberately crashing in to Prost for revenge, and prost was crashing in to Senna for win a ch. The difference was one did it in a chicane, Senna did it in a fast corner.

      • MoveOnItsGettingOld says:

        The rule doesn’t matter if this is at 70mph or 170mph as it’s to do with the space and not speed. Yes you could argue a situational case but think Stroll just after Grosjeans crash flipping upside down.. allow speed but still dangerous. The phrase “predominantly to blame” means they are not absolving Max of no wrong doing. It’s basically saying 70/30 wrong so you get a slap on a wrist and that’s it, done and move on.

      • Peter Kasbergen says:

        No, he was not. The outside car is always more at risk of crashing (which causes more damage).

    • Landon Donavan says:

      so you are saying that drivers should fake injury to get their opponents a bigger penalty.

      • Roel Andersom says:

        No, i didn’t say that, I agree with Masi that an equal incident should be treated equally. My point is that a high speed incident is not the same as a low speed incident.

  • This doesn’t really make sense to me, imagine this happens on the last race of the season and one of them walks away with the WDC with a minimal penalty. How is that fair at all, these collisions should be judged on an individual basis instead of having a rule which governs all, because all collisions are different.

    • I totally agree with you, happy to see someone else think like this. It’s stupid to me that the consequences are not taken into account, sometimes small mistakes have huge consequences, why don’t we have the brainpower to realize this.

    • Landon Donavan says:

      yeah…………….a great way to make it even more inconsistent. it was a racing incident. F1 fans are so snowflakey these days. you race hard, these thing will happen. Move on ffs.

  • If drivers make a risky move on a more dangerous part of the track and it goes wrong then they should be penalised more heavier as this will act as a deterrent and discourage drivers from making more reckless manoeuvres therefore making F1 safer, something that the FIA strives to do. And no this will not make racing boring, we want to see exciting races, not drivers being hospitalised. We don’t need crashes to make races exciting. If a driver knew they would be penalised more for making a risky move on a more dangerous part of the track rather than a less dangerous part, then they would be more careful. Rather than the mentality of ‘I’ll give it a go and if it goes wrong (which would have harsher potentially fatal consequences if it went wrong on a more dangerous part) then I won’t get in too much trouble’ Perhaps the FIA could grade parts of the track as green, amber, red where if an illegal manoeuvre is made on a green part then the penalty will be minimal and if an illegal manoeuvre is made on a red part of the track then the penalty will be more severe.

  • gremlinfromkremlin says:

    its the 3rd time its happened when Hamilton has been involved with a redbull in a similar fashion. I think the penalty was fair but it didn’t warrant for anything more…

  • The question of whether Hamilton should have been penalised or not has been decided correctly and VERY fairly by the stewards. Massey agreed with the stewards on that point. H O W E V E R the penalty imposed is decidedly inadequate because Hamilton’s mindset AT THAT TIME must be taken into account.
    By his own admission Hamilton was being AGGRESSIVE. Hamilton is the most competent and experienced driver on the grid and knows, understands and is able to use every cm of his racing car because of that. Therefore he knew that he was placing Max AT RISK by doing what he did in that specific corner of the race. He knew the dangers and yet made the decision to “do battle” because he also knew that he could use his Mercedes as a weapon in that situation. Again he knows he is “the best”!
    Consider the race pattern that Hamilton now uses to defeat his opposition in his fight for supremacy. Consider the pattern that has been repeated with Alex Albon (twice) and now Max Verstappen. I am pretty sure that Sky News could find a number of other instances of this pattern. Hamilton is able to tip his opponents car off the track from the inside line with calculated ease.
    Considering that the race stewards did not hesitate in awarding a one race penalty to Grojean for rather similar antics when he was doing so without any malicious intent IMHO the stewards need to review their decision about the British GP incident and penalise Hamilton for one race. At least!
    I agree with Hamilton when he says no one will get him to change his aggressive attitude in his driving “style” so it is now up to the stewards to show him that he MUST adjust his assessment of risk and accept more responsibility for the other drivers on the track. He needs to show other drivers more RESPECT, by deed rather than word, in the same way as he promotes Black Lives Matter with such conviction.

  • You people are of hard hearts. Let It Go! the Brit were so disappointed at bringing nothing home. Give them some consolation so they can sleep at night.

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