Hamilton was allowed to get rid of a lap behind in Imola due to regulations

Lewis Hamilton stood still in the gravel after 31 laps, had to go back into the pits for a new front wing and came back on the track one lap behind. An apparently hopeless position, but another thirty laps later he crossed the line in second place. “How!?” so many fans wonder.

First, the seven-time world champion gave a masterclass ‘never give up’ and drove a very strong catch-up race in the second company, but the crash of teammate Valtteri Bottas and the accompanying red flag also played into his hands. Hamilton had to defend strongly against immediately after the start Max Verstappen, who launched a successful attack on the lead when braking for the first chicane. The Mercedes driver went hard over the curbs, causing him to lose part of his front wing.

Rare mistake Hamilton

The damage seemed to be okay, because in terms of lap times Hamilton did not deteriorate much. He managed to keep the pressure on at Verstappen, who soon had to find his way through the traffic behind. This worked without much loss of time, but this is where things went wrong for the Mercedes driver. After 31 laps – now on the slicks – he wanted too eager to get past the stragglers, causing him to crash into the gravel and into the boarding. It took a while, but Hamilton managed to get back onto the track. The Brit immediately went into the pits to pick up a new front wing.

Happiness with red flag

He came out in ninth place and one lap behind, with which a good result seemed no longer possible. A few laps later, Valtteri Bottas and George Russell However, together they went hard, after which the race was stopped with a red flag. Bad news for the Finn, but good news for the Brit. With a rolling restart, drivers may get rid of a lap delay prior to the warm-up lap. This allowed Hamilton to rejoin the field and eventually – in a very clever way – he fought back to second place.

Changed regulations

This rule has been reintroduced into the regulations since 2012. In the years before, this was not part of the regulations, which meant that restarts were sometimes very chaotic because those who were left behind could drive between the leaders in the race, according to Motorsport.com from. This could influence the final result. However, you could also argue that being allowed to get rid of a lap down gives an unfair advantage, because the drivers allowed to run in a lap can get the tires up to temperature more easily. This while the cars at the front – especially in wet conditions – often have difficulty with this due to the pace of the Safety Car.
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