Lewis Hamilton caught in F1 controversy over video footage

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·Sports Reporter
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F1 fans speculated Lewis Hamilton could face a fine after a close brush with the parked up Red Bull following the Spanish GP. Pictures: Twitter/Getty IMages
F1 fans speculated Lewis Hamilton could face a fine after a close brush with the parked up Red Bull following the Spanish GP. Pictures: Twitter/Getty IMages

Formula One fans have been contemplating whether or not there could be fines issued to Lewis Hamilton after the Mercedes driver brushed up against one of his rivals' cars.

Hamilton was on his way back to the team garage after being called in for a standard anti-doping test, cutting through the parc ferme area of the paddock to do so.

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He had to squeeze past the parked up Red Bulls as each car awaited FIA inspection after the race, with footage of him doing so captured by a fan who pondered whether or not the seven-time world champion had touched the Red Bull's rear wing.

Drivers are prohibited from making any contact with another team's car for obvious reasons, with controversy erupting last year after eventual champion Max Verstappen was fined for testing the flexibility of the Mercedes rear wing.

Verstappen was fined 50,000 euros for that transgression, although coincidentally on that occasion at the Brazilian GP, Hamilton's wing was actually found to not be to FIA standard.

However last year Verstappen could be clearly seen testing the flexibility of the Mercedes wing, while Hamilton was seen carfully picking his way past the Red Bull in the video from the Spanish GP.

Prominent F1 commentator Will Buxton dismissed the conversation as little more than F1 'hoopla'.

“From this … doesn’t look comparable to the Verstappen Brazil incident," Buxton posted on Twitter.

"Appears he’s just walking through. You’re normally not supposed to enter parc ferme, regardless of whether you’re a driver or not, but this doesn’t appear to be the hoopla being suggested.”

Fellow F1 reporter Jon Noble agreed, saying that it was clear Hamilton was attempting to avoid unneccesary contact after last year's shenanigans.

“Here is video of the incident, which looks much more like he is squeezing behind it on way back from doping test to the paddock," he wrote.

Hamilton was fifth in the second Mercedes despite a first lap collision with the Haas of Kevin Magnussen dropping him to the back of the grid after needing a tyre change.

Mercedes upbeat after Spanish GP upgrades pay off

After a difficult start to the season in which they have struggled to come to grips with this year's overhaul of technical regulations, Mercedes appeared to have more pace in Spain than anywhere else this season so far.

Major upgrades introduced for the grand prix unlocked pace by working to solve the team's porpoising issue.

Hamilton completed a string recovery drive and could have finished as high as fourth, while teammate George Russell claimed his second podium of the season.

The seven-time champion said it had been an encouraging weekend for the team.

Lewis Hamilton says the upgrades Mercedes brought to the Spanish GP have inspired a lot of confidence. (Photo by Urbanandsport/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Lewis Hamilton says the upgrades Mercedes brought to the Spanish GP have inspired a lot of confidence. (Photo by Urbanandsport/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

“A race like that is like a win and feels better most often than a win when you come from so far back,” he said afterwards.

“I had to get through a lot of adversity in that race starting from so far back.

"We have made a lot of improvements with the car, the race pace is much better.

"It is a great sign we are going in the right direction and that gives me great hope that at some stage we will be fighting for a win.

“I was thinking this is impossible to get back into the points but they said no I was on for eighth.

“I thought we may as well save the engine so we can live to fight another day. Thank God we didn’t, that is why we never stop we never give up and that’s what I did."

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