Mercedes: right of review not about punishing Verstappen

Mercedes says its decision to request a review of Max Verstappen’s driving at the Brazilian Grand Prix was more about understanding the rules of racing than getting the Dutchman punished.

Mercedes: right of review not about punishing Verstappen

The world champion squad wanted the FIA to reconsider its decision not to investigate Verstappen for pushing Hamilton wide at they battled for the lead at Interlagos last weekend.

However, despite submitting fresh evidence including the forward facing on-board footage from Verstappen’s car, the FIA rejected Mercedes’s case, which means the matter is now closed.

Speaking before the final verdict came out, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff explained that the main motivation behind the review was not to try to get Verstappen a penalty.

Instead, it was about getting some clarity about the rules of racing, with the FIA’s verdict on Verstappen’s driving inconsistent with other incidents where penalties have been handed down.

Wolff said: “It's more about the principle and the philosophy.

“Because if it stays that way, that means overtaking from the outside is pretty much not possible anymore, because the inside controls the corner completely.

“Now that is anyway the case, but before, when a car is next to you, you needed to leave a car width, and that's not the case [now].

“So we just want to take it to the end, have a judgement on that and then adapt if necessary for the last few races. You can see some of the drivers have actually expressed the same opinion.”

He added: “It's more the real the racing consequences that it has, and I have a very strong opinion about that.

“It is really important to understand what's on and what's not on for the next few races, because we don't want this championship to be decided by a highly controversial situation that may end up in the stewards' room again, and with lots of polarisation afterwards.”

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W12

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W12

Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images

Wolff said that getting clarity on what is and is not allowed in terms of pushing other drivers off track was important for laying ground rules that would hopefully prevent the world championship being decided in the courts.

“We don't want to end up after Saudi Arabia or Abu Dhabi, wherever it may end, in one or the other direction, and it going to the stewards' room, or to the International Court of Appeal because one of the team feels it wasn't treated rightly. So that's why now is the time for this championship to discuss the rules.”

shares
comments

Related video

Why Mercedes' right of review into Verstappen's Brazil F1 driving was denied
Previous article

Why Mercedes' right of review into Verstappen's Brazil F1 driving was denied

Next article

Horner: Red Bull ready to protest Mercedes F1 rear wing

Horner: Red Bull ready to protest Mercedes F1 rear wing
The forgettable final car of a former F1 giant that gave Damon Hill his start Plus

The forgettable final car of a former F1 giant that gave Damon Hill his start

While it launched the F1 career 
of a future world champion, STUART CODLING recalls that the BT60 was also the final nail in the coffin of a once-great marque 30 years ago. Here is its story

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future Plus

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future

Multiple-title-winning designer and team boss Ross Brawn is finally leaving Formula 1 after nearly 50 years in motorsport. But he still has plenty of insights on what’s working and what comes next, as he revealed to Autosport in a far-reaching exclusive interview in Abu Dhabi

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2022
The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat Plus

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat

OPINION: Mattia Binotto’s departure from Ferrari will naturally bring a range of changes across the Formula 1 team. But how the changes shape up and the impact they could have is set to be dictated by a key direction Ferrari’s top dogs will need to pick

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2022
The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants Plus

The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants

OPINION: Mercedes endured its worst season of the hybrid Formula 1 era, but was mercifully spared its first winless campaign in over a decade late on. It has owned up to the mistakes it made which led to its troubled W13. And while its task to return to title-challenging contention is not small, its 2022 season seems more like a blip than the beginning of a downward spiral.

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2022
The physical focus bringing out the best of an F1 midfield star Plus

The physical focus bringing out the best of an F1 midfield star

Esteban Ocon likes to point out he’s the first driver since Lewis Hamilton to emerge from a spell as Fernando Alonso’s team-mate with a superior overall points record. While some may disagree, as LUKE SMITH discovered, the 2021 Hungarian GP winner reckons it’s not just luck which has made him France’s pre-eminent Formula 1 driver of the moment…

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2022
How Red Bull's dynamic leader shaped its F1 philosophy Plus

How Red Bull's dynamic leader shaped its F1 philosophy

The death of Dietrich Mateschitz last month has not only deprived Red Bull of its visionary founder, it has shorn Formula 1 of one of its most influential benefactors. Mateschitz himself was famously media-shy, preferring to let the brand do the talking on his behalf. And, while it’s now normal to speak of Red Bull F1 titles and champions made, Mateschitz never assumed it would be easy or even possible – as ANTHONY ROWLINSON discovered during this previously unpublished interview from 2006…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2022
Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom? Plus

Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom?

OPINION: Teams that have dominated for long periods throughout Formula 1's history often take years to get back to the top of the tree once they've slipped down. But it remains to be seen whether the same will happen to Mercedes after a challenging 2022 season

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2022
What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi Plus

What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi

Arguably the favourite in the battle to finish second best in 2022's Formula 1 standings, Sergio Perez's two-stop strategy at Abu Dhabi couldn't take him ahead of Charles Leclerc when the music stopped - and several key factors ultimately precluded him from the much-coveted runner-up spot

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2022