McLaren’s conversation with race control put lives at risk, asserts Mosley.
FIA President Max Mosley has criticised the way Lewis Hamilton’s controversial pass on Kimi Raikkonen in Belgium was handled, hitting out at McLaren for seeking approval from race control during the incident.
When Hamilton cut the Bus Stop chicane during his duel with Raikkonen, McLaren chiefs immediately contacted race control’s Charlie Whiting to see if the Briton, who relinquished track position on the start/finish straight, was free to attack the Ferrari into the following corner. The team were twice told the move was ‘okay’, according to McLaren CEO Martin Whitmarsh.
Max Mosley has criticised McLaren for making the call, and Whiting for answering, arguing that race control are not in a position to offer a “considered opinion” in the heat of a race.
“McLaren should not have asked [race director] Charlie Whiting whether Lewis had done anything wrong and he should not have answered,” he told The Daily Telegraph.
“When rain came down on one of the fastest circuits in the world, with most of the cars on dry tyres, it was a very dangerous situation.
“If there had been a spin and a collision between two cars, it would have been a nightmare. That is something none of our safety procedures can deal with.”
“Charlie was in one of the most highly pressured situations, so teams should not ask and he should not answer, because he is not in a position to give even the beginnings of a considered opinion. His responsibility was to see that nobody got killed.”
Hamilton was dealt a 25 second penalty for his actions which gifted race victory to his title rival Felipe Massa. McLaren have appealed against the ruling and will be heard on 22 September, after this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix.