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Lewis Hamilton has explained his side of things after getting in trouble with race stewards for breaching the sporting regulations in FP1 on Friday. Mercedes are hoping for a much better showing this weekend at Zandvoort after a disappointing performance at the Belgian Grand Prix.
Hamilton in particular had a weekend to forget as he suffered his first retirement of the season. It was a different story altogether in FP1 though as George Russell and Hamilton finished as the two fastest drivers with Red Bull struggling.
FP2 followed a similar fashion, although both Ferrari drivers were able to pip Hamilton on the timesheet. But it wasn’t all plain-sailing for Hamilton as he got in trouble with the stewards after being deemed to have impeded Carlos Sainz in FP1.
The FIA report read: “Alleged breach of Article 37.5 of the FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations – Car 44 unnecessarily impeding car 55 in turns 12-13 at 13:18.” Sainz moaned on radio at the time: “What he just did is very dangerous.”
The stewards decided against giving him a penalty though and Hamilton has now spoken out on the incident, insisting he found it almost impossible to see out of his mirrors on the tricky circuit while his radio also wasn’t working. “Today I had really, really bad radio and then P1 I didn’t have any radio,” he told Sky Sports.
“So managing the gap just through your mirrors was really quite tough. That’s what I got pulled up for. Hopefully we’ll fix that overnight and we’ll do everything to stay out of trouble tomorrow.”
The Zandvoort circuit has been likened to the Hungarian Grand Prix by some, hinting that Mercedes will have much better joy than last week at Spa. But Hamilton points out that the fast and sweeping corners at Zandvoort will make it much more of a challenge on Sunday.
“This track is a lot more aggressive on the tyres so maybe getting tyre temperature in is easier than somewhere like Budapest, which is a lot smoother,” he added. “It’s too early to say, but today we’ve been much closer than we’ve ever really been.
“I don’t want to get my hopes up too much. I think we just continue to do what we’re doing. We still have problems with bouncing and things like that so we have to work on that tonight.
“But I’m hoping if we can make the progress we usually make between Friday and Saturday, that will be awesome for tomorrow.”
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