Vettel Could Face Further Action Over Hamilton Clash
The heated controversy over the clash between Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton at the 2017 Azerbaijan Grand Prix doesn’t seem to be over yet. The FIA, Formula One’s governing body led by Jean Todt, has just announced it would revisit the controversial on-track collision between the two drivers, as well as its causes, and determine whether Vettel should have received more than the 10-second stop-and-go penalty he was already handed during the race, in addition to the three points to his license.
“Following the recent incident at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix in which Car 5 (Sebastian Vettel) was involved in a collision with Car 44 (Lewis Hamilton), on Monday July 3, the FIA will further examine the causes on the incident in order to evaluate whether further action is necessary,” the FIA said in a statement.
The announcement is sure to stoke the already furious fire of controversy that followed the exciting Grand Prix in Baku, Azerbaijan, and may prove to be even more inflammatory, should the FIA eventually decide to punish the Ferrari driver even further, which would likely involve a ban from an upcoming race. Given how close the championship battle has been this year between Vettel and Hamilton, any sort of penalty could be decisive.
Though most agree that Vettel’s wheel-bumping action during the race was inexcusable, many also feel it was not dangerous and more importantly, could not have been dangerous and was possibly not even deliberate. In that light, Vettel’s penalty was inappropriate and perhaps even too harsh.
Others feel differently. Some remember his verbal outburst at race director Charlie Whiting last year at the 2016 Mexican Grand Prix, for which—though the anger was probably justified—Vettel was warned not to bring the sport under further disrepute, or else face further sanctions.
The FIA has not specified how it would go about investigating the incident, but did say it would release a statement regarding the outcome before the Austrian Grand Prix, which will take place on July 9.
Kurt Verlin was born in France and lives in the United States. Throughout his life he was always told French was the language of romance, but it was English he fell in love with. He likes cats, music, cars, 30 Rock, Formula 1, and pretending to be a race car driver in simulators; but most of all, he just likes to write about it all. See more articles by Kurt.