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Mercedes embarrassed: 'We just want to comply with the rules'

Mercedes embarrassed: 'We just want to comply with the rules'

26-10-2023 19:18

A disqualification after a Grand Prix does not happen often, but it happened to Mercedes after the US Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton's car didn't pass the post-race tests, which James Allison and Mercedes felt guilty about.

There was a lot of optimism at Mercedes after the United States Grand Prix. After all, the updates had worked. Lewis Hamilton had already finished second in the sprint race on Saturday and came very close to victory in the Grand Prix on Sunday. A few hours after the race, however, the FIA clamped down: Hamilton was disqualified.

The plank under the floor of the W14 had worn out too much and, like Charles Leclerc, Hamilton was removed from the results. However, according to Allison, it had nothing to do with the update. "The disqualification had everything to do with the setup and the bumpiness of the track. Amplified by the fact that it was a sprint weekend."

Why Mercedes are embarrassed

It was difficult to avoid, according to Mercedes' technical director. After the first free practice, the teams have to determine a setup, and it cannot be fixed after qualifying on Friday. That caused Mercedes to run into problems later, and could not adjust Hamilton's car any differently.

"The disqualification is a significant blow. It’s a miserable feeling. It hurts, and everybody here feels it. Everybody is upset, and embarrassed to a degree as well because we absolutely don’t like being on the wrong side of the rules and just lamenting the lost points," the Mercedes chief said.

It was a particular problem for Lewis Hamilton, whose second place had put him very close to Sergio Perez in the world championship. Now the Brit lost ground on his rival in the battle for second place in the world championship, but there are still four Grands Prix and sprint to make up for it.