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Hamilton, Webber, Vettel meet FIA over Japan crash

Hamilton, Webber, Vettel meet FIA over Japan crash

Lewis Hamilton and two other drivers met with Formula One authorities Friday in an investigation of the Briton's driving during last week's Japanese Grand Prix.
After a drivers' briefing, Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber and their team officials reported to three stewards at the Chinese Grand Prix.
The group looked at various parts of the race including an amateur video of the accident that led to the investigation.
Vettel and Webber left after about 30 minutes but Hamilton and the McLaren team manager Dave Ryan discussed the incident for about 20 minutes more. Hamilton then left without comment.
The stewards, Tony-Scott Andrews, Hermann Tomcyk and Gao Xuechun stayed and discussed the evidence and drivers' statements.
Hamilton could be penalized grid positions in Sunday's race, jeopardizing his chance to clinch the drivers' title and become the first rookie driver to win the F1 championship.
On Thursday, the FIA, F1's governing body, said it was looking into "new evidence" of Hamilton's driving whilst behind the safety car in the rain-soaked race at the Fuji Speedway. Hamilton won the race to extend his lead in the drivers' standings to 12 points over McLaren teammate Fernando Alonso.
Hamilton is accused of speeding up and slowing down behind the safety car, causing Red Bull driver Webber and Toro Rosso's Vettel to collide behind him on the 46th lap.
Ron Dennis, the McLaren team boss, spoke tactfully about the incident in a news conference Friday.
"At the Japanese Grand Prix after Lewis had left the circuit, the stewards wished to see some of the footage relating to the race," Dennis said. "We called the hotel and by the time we located him, they advised us they didn't need to see him."
"And thus far we have not received any formal communication of the stewards that they wish to see him again," Dennis said early Friday afternoon.
However the FIA confirmed it wanted to see the three drivers for their version of the crash.
Webber and Vettel both spoke at a news conference Thursday about the incident and were critical of Hamilton.
Webber said Hamilton was slowing and speeding up behind the safety car, which would hamper the drivers behind him, especially with the water spray affecting visibility.
"It definitely contributed to Sebastian hitting me up the back," Webber said.
"In the end it was my fault for crashing into Mark's car, so I'm not here to blame anybody but it's clear that the rhythm was not there," Vettel said.
All the cars were trying to keep the heat in their tires by accelerating and slowing or swerving from side to side.
"In the end we are all sitting in the same boat," Vettel said. "It's raining, there is a safety car for a long time and it's quite complicated to keep the temperatures in the brakes and avoid glazing them."


Updated : 2021-10-24 10:51 GMT+08:00