2011 Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix

equiraptor

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I'm on another forum with a significant percentage of racing drivers. Some of them are amateurs, some are pros, some are racing coaches, some are car developers, parts developers, etc. There's a thread about this F1 race, and like in many other forums, there are mixed opinions about Hamilton's behavior. But one comment I found particularly interesting. This comes from an experienced racing driver.

Now if you've been an member of this forum for awhile you'd know that I haven't been a Hamilton supporter ever. However while watching the race yesterday, I found myself cheering him on, for even attempting to pass at Monaco. Then I realized why it was that he's making some of these moves stick. Why is he the best at passing in F1 today?

Then it clicked. He puts his car in a position where if you're being passed you have to make the decision, either let him pass or have an incident. That I respect.

Then I thought I wonder how many times Senna would have to meet with the stewards today? Probably once a race.

Without doubt, there is a higher emphasis on safety now than in previous eras. Hamilton is aggressive, and he has the skill to back up that aggression. But there are cases where the aggression is and isn't appropriate. At most F1 tracks, there is run-off room available, sometimes more, sometimes less, but there's often some. In these cases, the "incident" Hamilton's passing behavior causes may mean someone running over some curbing, someone going off track, or maybe wing damage or a punctured tire. Yes, sometimes there's worse, but often, it can be contained to lower levels of damage. At Monaco, with the lack of runoff and the close barriers, these "incidents" have a higher risk of resulting in significant car damage, taking a car out of the race, and there's a higher risk of human injury.

The stewards have shown, by their penalties, that those higher levels of risk are not acceptable to them. Clearly, some fans agree and some disagree. My personal opinion is that Hamilton's attempted pass on Massa in the hairpin was not an acceptable level of risk, given the proximity of the two cars in front (these introduce an added unpredictability and reduce the space Massa has to use to reduce the severity of a potential incident). His pass on Maldanado was very similar to his pass on Schumacher. Hamilton's pass of Schumacher worked, because Schumacher has (and used) the experience, the wisdom, and the skill to balance aggression and incident avoidance. Maldanado didn't, that time (note: I don't mean to be harshly critical of Maldanado - he is less experienced than Schumacher, and this pass occurred later in the race, when the drivers are more drained, making quick decisions more challenging). To me, the attempted pass on Maldanado was not "too much," but it was "extremely aggressive."
 

tezgm99

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Hamilton is aggressive, and he has the skill to back up that aggression.

that's all well and good, but to then turn around and complain when someone decides to race him the same way....I'm not sure about that, lol
 

SpitfireMK461

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Just watched the replay.

I think each of the penalties were unnecessary. Monaco is a track where every pass has a high risk of collision, that is the nature of the track. Penalizing that contact is just excessive. To address equiraptor, I think collisions can be accepted at Monaco more so than other tracks because of the low speed nature of most passing areas. As we saw at the hairpin with two of the penalties, neither collision was risking real injury.

More specifically, though, each incident happened because the leading driver tried to close the door when the overtaking car already had the inside. The Hamilton/Schumey pass is how each one should have occurred. In the end, these were racing incidents. I feel the stewards need to calm down. Especially at Monaco, overtaking is an aggressive and risky maneuver. Sometimes collisions happen and that is just the nature of racing.
 

Sir Stiggington

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Completely agree with you Spitfoire, and this illustrates it very well. Hamilton pulled the exact same move on Schumacher and Maldonado, and Schumacher reacted in the mature way:

http://img10.imageshack.**/img10/3530/6a42e56c4c.jpg
 

ahpadt

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Hey guys. I wanted to apologise 4 last weekends performance & also my comments after, I never meant to offend no1.
I would also like to say thank u 2 everyone on here, 4 their positive messages & also 2 the angry messages. I can respect them both.
2 Massa & Maldonado, with the greatest respect I apologise if I offended u. Both of u r fantastic drivers who I regard highly.
2 my fans lost & my fans won, I wish u nothing but love & happiness. God Bless u. Onwards & upwards, Montreal next. Lewis

https://twitter.com/#!/LewisHamilton
 

Coconut Chucker

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Just a comment on Lewis Hamilton's second penalty, the 20-second penalty at the end of the race (not debating on whether he should have been penalized or not). That the driver behind him finished a whole lap down, I don't think 20 seconds is an appropriate penalty, even though they're just going by the book on it. I'd have looked into giving him a five-place grid penalty in Montreal, even though I'm not sure if that's possible within the current rules.
 
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ahpadt

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He's gonna get a grid drop because the next driver was a lap down? Where's the logic in that???
 

narf

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If it was not that close to the end of the race he'd get a drive through, even if he was the last driver in the field :dunno:
 

Coconut Chucker

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I'll take that as a no. It was just an impulsive thought, getting it beaten to the ground for it being a stupid idea was one possible reaction I expected.
 

narf

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Punishment should not be influenced by the surrounding situation. See old people getting long jail sentences, we all know they won't be alive to serve it all yet they don't get an alternative punishment to make up for that "lost jailtime".
 

mpicco

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I'm with Victoria because he not only made contact, he forced Maldonado to retire.
I see the point narf makes about 2 crimes committed by 2 different people having the same punishment if they have the same consequences, but for example, if a person stabs another it's an attempt of murder, yet if the stabbing has longing consequences like the loss of feel of the whole right arm cos it struck a nerve, lets say, the punishment might be more severe than if it was just a flesh wound with no bigger consequences than a scar.

Such is the situation with Hamilton vs Massa and Hamilton vs Maldonado, where in one he only caused a collision with little damage and in the other he caused a collision which robbed Maldonado of a very respectable finishing place.

Before the flames start, I don't disagree with the punishment he's been given, but I'm just saying I wouldn't have been surprised if it was something more severe like Victoria suggested. Whilst rules are rules they are open to interpretation and ultimately it's the stewards who are the "judges" of these situations.

equiraptor said:
Then it clicked. He puts his car in a position where if you're being passed you have to make the decision, either let him pass or have an incident. That I respect.
Did it click to him when Martin Brundle was talking about Senna in the Top Gear tribute? Cos that's almost paraphrasing.
 

MadCow809

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20sec penalty is far too lenient. I was expecting something like a 5 place drop penalty.

Hamilton made several contacts and forced another driver to retire.
 

Dr_Grip

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I don't like Hamilton, that's widely known around here. BUT the rules say the penalty for causing an avoidable collision is a drive-thru. Not a five-place grid drop, not a DSQ, not a ban. If Hamilton got TWO drive-thrus, the second of which in the form of a 20-second drop in the results and still stays ahead of the next car, that's good for him but it does not mean that his punishment was too weak/should have been changed but that the driver following him was too slow.
 

mpicco

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I don't like Hamilton, that's widely known around here. BUT the rules say the penalty for causing an avoidable collision is a drive-thru. Not a five-place grid drop, not a DSQ, not a ban. If Hamilton got TWO drive-thrus, the second of which in the form of a 20-second drop in the results and still stays ahead of the next car, that's good for him but it does not mean that his punishment was too weak/should have been changed but that the driver following him was too slow.

Say DriverA is running first and DriverB close behind, and both of them have a 40 second lead over the 3rd placed car... all DriverB has to do is punt DriverA off the road and grab the spot despite serving the penalty? Should he be served the same drive through than if, say, the 17th and the 18th collided cos of 18th's fault?
 
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Dr_Grip

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Say DriverA is running first and DriverB close behind, and both of them have a 40 second lead over the 3rd placed car... all DriverB has to do is punt DriverA off the road and grab the spot despite serving the penalty?

That's basically the Senna-Prost scenario. 'Nuff said.
 

mpicco

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That's basically the Senna-Prost scenario. 'Nuff said.

That was 20 years ago! Don't tell me we're enforcing the same rules the same way. Whilst I love the example, it just doesn't apply.

So if that happened the next race, you would really just support a drive through for such an act?
 

Dr_Grip

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So if that happened the next race, you would really just support a drive through for such an act?

An act of deliberately shooting another car off the track like in your example or in the Senna/Prost cases? That should be a DSQ. But it's not what Hamilton did. Hamilton (and diResta) did try to force their way past another car and in the process accepted that their might be contact. That's different and that's what, if there is contact, is penalised with a drive-thru. It's the rules. We can discuss if they are fair, but that's how it is now.

And while i understand that open wheelers are neither touring cars nor NASCAR racers, i think that if anything the rules should be interpreted more driver-friendly and not being modified to allow higher penalties. Hamilton did not intentionally run anyone off the road, he tried to muscle his way past another driver. While not really the nice way to overtake, it should not ne penalised harsher then it is (maybe all three incidents should not have been penalised) cause, as Sik Pony said, it's racing.
 
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WillDAQ

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I don't think 20 seconds is an appropriate penalty, even though they're just going by the book on it

Lets throw away the rule book... lets just make everything up as we go along based on a subjective opinion of justice... that's got to be fairer.
 
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