Mercedes rules out appeal against Hamilton Brazil quali DQ

Mercedes has announced it will not appeal Lewis Hamilton's disqualification from Formula 1 qualifying in Brazil, leaving him last on the grid for Saturday's sprint race.

Mercedes rules out appeal against Hamilton Brazil quali DQ
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Hamilton topped qualifying ahead of F1 title rival Max Verstappen on Friday, beating the Red Bull driver by four tenths of a second in Q3.

But Mercedes was summoned by the FIA stewards on Friday evening after his DRS was found to have breached the regulations in the post-session technical checks.

The stewards adjourned the initial hearing on Friday evening to wait on more evidence before reconvening in the morning, but did not announce a decision until after second practice.

It was announced that Hamilton would be disqualified from the qualifying results, with the stewards accepting that while it was not an intentional rule break by Mercedes, they could not accept that it was due to mitigating circumstances.

Mercedes had a right to appeal the ruling, and if they had done so, Hamilton would have retained first place on the grid for the sprint race, according to the team.

But it confirmed ahead of the 24-lap sprint race that it would not be appealing the decision, saying: "We want to win these world championships on the race track."

 

It means that Hamilton will be starting the sprint race from last place on the grid, with the team opting against a specification change that would have resulted in him starting from the pitlane.

Verstappen will now start the sprint race from pole position, giving him a golden opportunity to extend his 19-point lead over Hamilton at the top of the drivers' championship.

The sprint race will award three points to the winner, meaning Verstappen could sit as many as 22 points clear of Hamilton going into Sunday's race.

Regardless of where Hamilton finishes the sprint race, he will then drop back five places for his starting position on the final grid for Sunday's race due to an engine penalty.

Verstappen was also summoned by the stewards over a parc ferme rule breach when he touched the rear wing on Hamilton's car, resulting in a €50,000 fine for the Dutchman.

Both Mercedes and the stewards accepted that Verstappen touching the wing would not have resulted in the DRS on Hamilton's car failing the post-race checks.

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