Mercedes asks to review Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen incident

Mercedes called for an overshooting incident involving world champion Lewis Hamilton and his title rival Max Verstappen to be reviewed during the Brazilian Grand Prix, the Formula One team reported Tuesday.

Verstappen was leading the race on lap 48 when the Red Bull driver defended his position after a Hamilton lunge into turn four, and appeared to knock the Mercedes driver off the track.

Both continued the race and on lap 59 Hamilton passed Verstappen at Interlagos to win and cut the Dutchman’s lead to 14 points. Hamilton had to come back after starting Sunday from tenth position.

The race stewards were aware of the incident at the time, but quickly concluded that it did not merit a penalty as it was considered a race incident.

“I think it was a very good battle,” Verstappen said after the race. “Of course we both tried to get up front in that corner and I hit the brakes a little late to get into position … I think I was on the edge and it was a safer way to open up a bit. In a way, I was happy that the stewards decided that we could continue competing. “

Hamilton appeared to downplay the incident at the post-race press conference.

“I didn’t think much about it and obviously I will have to watch it again, but it’s hard to be fighting and I wouldn’t expect anything less,” said the British driver. “They didn’t touch our tires, which is good.”

But now Mercedes indicated that it will appeal “taking into consideration the new evidence that was not available at the time to the commissioners.”

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The stewards will now need to meet with team representatives to assess the new evidence. The International Automobile Federation will need to confirm whether to accept the review.

Three races remain in this exciting championship battle. The next will be in Qatar. If after the review they conclude that there was a Verstappen infraction, you could receive a penalty at the starting grid for the race or a five-second penalty.

Verstappen finished second in Brazil, ahead of Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes). The five-second penalty could relegate him to third place and reduce his overall standings lead from 14 to 11 points.

Hamilton, 36, is trying to win his eighth world championship and remain the absolute owner of the all-time record, which he shares with Michael Schumacher. Verstappen, 24, is looking to catch his first title.

After Qatar, the season will conclude with the first Saudi Arabian Grand Prix in the port city of Jeddah and the closing night in Abu Dhabi.

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