Wednesday, 6 June 2007

Should Hamilton have been black flagged?

Jacques Villeneuve’s criticism of Lewis Hamilton’s aggressive racing tactics off the line – he likened the Britain’s behaviour to that of Michael Schumacher’s chopping moves – seems to have caused a bit of a stir on the F1 blogosphere.

While the general consensus at F1 Fanatic was that the Canadian was, as one commentee put it, “talking his usual bollocks”, over at Downforce32, Sven Schindler has expressed his surprise that Hamilton has yet to be disqualified for his actions. Continued…

I must admit that I find myself in the former camp. I haven’t seen anything from him that warrants a black flag yet:

Australia

His move up to third here was, in my view, more of an avoidance strategy to get out of the way of Kubica. He moved into left where the open space was and left those on the inside plenty of room.

Malaysia

I guess the main point of criticism here is at the way he dived up the inside of Massa. In fairness though Massa did run slightly wide into the corner and Hamilton gave me plenty of space as he went round the outside.

Bahrain

I must admit that I cant categorically say that he didn’t chop his opponents at this start as I have been unable to find some footage to re watch it. Can anyone enlighten me?

Spain

Again, nothing wrong here; he moves across slightly to run alongside Raikkonen to get the inside line but by no means does he chop him up.

Monaco

This is the only real case for an accusation of chopping. Even here though it wasn’t as if Massa got a fantastic start. Many of Schumacher’s more aggressive moves tended to be where his opponent was actually already parallel or at least half-way parallel and then he would start to veer over to defend his position.

Maybe I’m wrong. Obviously I’m biased but I really can’t see anything wrong in Hamilton’s actions so far. In any case what is wrong with defending your position at the start?

2 comments:

George said...

Jacques Villeneuve is a bitter troll of a man who squandered a career full of victories for tobacco cash by going to BAR after Frank Williams said "thanks, no thanks" to JV's outrageous salary demand.

As for Hamilton, you cannot remotely compare the defensive moves of young Lewis to the infamous "Schumi Swerve". If Schumi was never disciplined, why should Hamilton?

F1Voice said...

Hi George,

Kind words there for the 1997 champion. I didn't realise that he left Williams because of a row over salary - how much was he demanding? The 'Winfield' Williams as I remember it wasn't exactly a gem of a car, I would have thought he would have been desperate to move.

As for the Hamilton start row, it seems some other drivers have lept to the Britain's defence. Fisichella has accused Villeneuve of talking too much:

"Jacques says quite a lot of things in the media right now. He talks too much."

Chris.