Mercedes: What’s gone wrong at the F1 and can they recover?
Lewis Hamilton and George Russell’s physios have been summoned to see the FIA after the Spanish Grand Prix with the Mercedes staff members potentially landing themselves in trouble with the sport’s governing body. The Silver Arrows celebrated their best result of the season in Barcelona after securing second and third place during Sunday’s race to land a double podium, but there could be trouble ahead as Toto Wolff’s team face an investigation.
Hamilton and Russell spoke with Max Verstappen in the cooldown room after finishing behind the Red Bull star, having secured podium finishes for the German manufacturer.
But a few hours after the race, the team was notified by the FIA that some members of their team may have breached regulations relating to which personnel are allowed in the parc ferme zone in the pitlane.
It was later revealed that Hamilton and Russell’s physios were the figures potentially in hot water with the FIA.
A summons letter read: “Driver physios must wait outside the cool down room behind the podium until the podium ceremony has concluded.”
Teams are told ahead of the race which members of their team are permitted into different areas of parc ferme, and those who violate the rules are usually issued with a punishment. There is also strict limitations placed upon team physios speaking or engaging with drivers after the podium ceremony.
The notes handed out to the teams say: “Other than the team mechanics (with cooling fans if necessary), officials and FIA pre-approved television crews and FIA approved photographers, no one else will be allowed in the designated area once the cars are in the Parc Ferme area (no team PR personnel).”
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Mercedes are now facing a potential fine after experiencing a similar instance at the Austrian Grand Prix in 2022, having been issued suspended fines on that occasion.
It would appear that Hamilton and Russell’s results at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya are not under any threat from the FIA as it is related to a team procedure breach, rather than their car or an incident that occurred during the race.
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