F1: Sebastian Vettel Unhappy With Penalty Weighting After Restart Clash

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Sebastian Vettel believes Lewis Hamilton should also have been penalised for his role in their collision behind the safety car during the recent Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

The pair – currently locking horns at the top of the Formula 1 World Championship standings – were running first and second in Baku when the safety car was called in before the race was restarted.

Under the regulations, leader Hamilton retains the right to set the pace for the field behind until choosing a moment to restart proceedings.

Coming into Turn 15, Vettel’s Ferrari made contact with the rear-wing of Hamilton’s Mercedes, damaging the former’s front wing.

The four-time world champion then pulled alongside the Brit and steered right, making tyre-on-tyre contact.

FIA telemetry analysis has since absolved Hamilton of any wrong-doing, confirming his Mercedes braked at the same point during Turn 15 as during previous laps without incident.

Vettel was handed a ten-second stop/go penalty during the race for his behaviour, and more severe punishment is expected to follow when the matter is referred to the FIA on 3rd July.

The race was eventually won by Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo after Hamilton was forced to pit of his own accord with a dislodged headrest on safety grounds. Vettel commented,

“It was a very busy start, and Vallteri was very aggressive, […] As for what happened at the restart from the safety car, I don’t know why I got the penalty and Lewis didn’t.”

“It’s disappointing, because it could have been a better result. I don’t have a problem with Lewis but I just think that what he did on the track was not OK.”

“By now the decision is done but, in an episode like this one, I still think that if you give out a penalty, then it should be to both drivers.”

If Vettel is excluded from the result in Baku, Hamilton will take over the lead of the championship heading to Austria in seven days time.

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Sport Editor at the Wessex Scene. Often found in the racing paddocks of the UK as a freelance national motorsport journalist or PR. Self-titled comedic genius, notorious wearer of Union-branded clothing.

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