British drivers Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) and Mongolian driver Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) were disqualified, after more than three hours of the United States Grand Prix in Formula 1, because their car was too low.
According to a statement issued on Sunday, October 22 by race officials, the sliding blocks under the drivers’ cars did not meet requirements.
Formula 1 cars have a plank, or skid block, used to test the height of the cars. If the plate is eroded by more than a millimeter, the car and driver will be disqualified.
The disqualification announcement stated that Mercedes said the problem was due to harsh track conditions, a situation that even Dutch winner Max Verstappen (Red Bull) complained about.
“The stewards stress that the responsibility lies with the manufacturer to ensure the car complies with the regulations,” race officials said.
The Mercedes president said the team would not file an appeal. “Others have made mistakes where we have made mistakes and there is no room for maneuver in the rules. We need to face that, learn and come back stronger next weekend,” Toto Wolff said.
The next tour will be specifically in Mexico, in a week.
Lewis Hamilton finished 56 laps of the United States Grand Prix, the 18th race of the year, in second place, 2.225 seconds behind winner Max Verstappen, while Charles Leclerc finished sixth.
After starting from sixth place on the grid, Verstappen achieved his fifteenth victory this season, equaling the maximum number of victories in the same season that he had already achieved in 2022. It was also the 50th victory in Formula 1 for the Red Bull driver. .
Hamilton’s exclusion gave second place to his British compatriot Lando Norris (McLaren), who finished third with a time of 10.730 seconds.
It was also the 750th podium finish for British drivers in Formula 1 history. At the end of the championship, with the titles already awarded to Verstappen (drivers’ title) and Red Bull (constructors’ title), the podium was all about the fight for second place.
In that battle, Hamilton once again lost ground to Mexican Sergio Perez (Red Bull), who was fifth, but ended up being promoted to fourth.
With 50 races won, Verstappen, now a three-time world champion, is fifth on the list of the most successful drivers ever in the sport. With this win, the Red Bull driver also reached 466 points in the championship, which represents a new maximum in Formula 1 history.
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