Lewis Hamilton, the seasoned Formula One driver, risked disqualification from the United States Grand Prix in a surprising turn of circumstances.
The race in Austin presented unexpected complications for Hamilton and Charles Leclerc, who were both disqualified after mechanical issues were discovered during post-race checks.
Plank Wear Inspection Unveils Irregularities
The disqualification issue started when the FIA Technical crew performed a plank wear examination on Hamilton and Leclerc’s vehicles.
This routine inspection discovered abnormalities linked to skids in a specific region that exceeded the compliance parameters stipulated by Article 3.5.9 e) of the 2023 Formula One Technical Regulations.
“The skids located in the area -825 ≥ XR ≥ – 1025 are found to be not in compliance.” noted the Delegate’s Report.
Hamilton’s Incredible Run and Upgraded Floor
Lewis Hamilton, recognized for his exceptional abilities on the track, finished an excellent second in the United States Grand Prix.
Throughout the race, he pursued the victorious Max Verstappen, demonstrating his commitment and expertise.
Hamilton’s Mercedes crew had installed a new floor in Austin, their penultimate big modification of the season.
Leclerc’s Sixth Place Finish and Strategy Decisions
Charles Leclerc, racing for Ferrari, finished sixth in the Grand Prix. However, his one-stop race strategy resulted in a late-stage loss in positions.
Leclerc finished sixth despite slipping behind George Russell in the final circuits.
The anomalies identified during the inspection added another degree of difficulty to the Ferrari driver’s already dramatic race.
The Appeal of Teams and the Decision of the Stewards
Mercedes and Ferrari both dispatched representatives to the stewards in reaction to the disqualification.
The teams claimed that the increased wear on the skid pads was caused by the peculiar mix of the rough track and the Sprint race schedule, which limited time for vehicle setup and checks before to the main race.
The stewards, on the other hand, emphasized the competitors’ obligation to maintain continual compliance with regulations, noting that the wear on the rear skid surpassed the prescribed criteria.
Revised Standings and Championship Implications
The disqualification changed the final results of the United States Grand Prix, rearranging the finishers’ position.
Lando Norris, who had started in third place, was promoted to second after Hamilton was disqualified. Carlos Sainz also moved up to take a podium slot.
In the context of the drivers’ championship, Sergio Perez, who had finished second to Hamilton before the disqualification, gained spots as a result of the disqualification, boosting his position in the race for second place.
The championship dynamics changed, with Russell, Pierre Gasly, and Lance Stroll rising in the updated rankings.
AlphaTauri’s Success and Williams’ Double Score
The disqualification had an impact on the team rankings. Williams saw Alex Albon take ninth position with both cars receiving points, while Logan Sargeant got his maiden Formula One point with a tenth-place result on home soil.
AlphaTauri had a fantastic day, with Yuki Tsunoda earning the fastest lap bonus point.
Final Thoughts: Unexpected Turns in Formula One Drama
The US Grand Prix was a thrilling chapter in the Formula One drama, but the post-race circumstances added unexpected twists.
Hamilton’s disqualification affected not just individual rankings, but also team and championship dynamics.
As Formula One fans digest the shock of this disqualification, the focus now moves to the future races and how this occurrence may affect the overall storyline of the 2023 season.