Criticism for Mika Salo: Hamilton Penalty is "nothing more than a bad joke"

28-09-2020 07:53
F1 News
Criticism for Mika Salo: Hamilton Penalty is nothing more than a bad joke

The Russian Grand Prix was partly decided in the stewards' room. Lewis Hamilton missed a win due to the double penalty for making practice starts in the wrong area before the race. Although punishable, German journalist Christian Nimmervoll believes that the Brit should never have received a time penalty for this.

"And yet I would have slept very, very badly last night if I had been Commissioner Mika Salo. Because the penalty of five seconds twice, which moves Hamilton's 91st victory to the Nürburgring of all places, is nothing more than a bad joke," Nimmervoll writes for

Had Nimmervoll been in charge, he would've given Hamilton a warning and a penalty point and then explained the rules again after the race. That would have been acceptable, because as race director Michael Masi explains to Nimmervoll: “The stewards may apply any penalty from the regulations”.

End of the road for Salo?

Mika Salo, one of the competition directors, has probably not been able to think about the matter properly, according to Nimmervoll, because he was busy sending texts to Finnish television. "Behavior that is utterly unbearable for a referee in a millionaire sport and can only lead to this gentleman losing his job."

What Hamilton did might have been punishable, but it wouldn't have resulted in a dangerous situation at all. In contrast to the actions of some of the other drivers during the start. “Verstappen and Sainz are driving like crazy around those signs in the exit zone of turn 2, so that they endanger themselves and others and don't even get the slightest admonition. That was perilous and should have been punished! Not Hamilton's completely innocent practice starts ”

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