Lando Norris defends fellow Brit Lewis Hamilton after FIA Azerbaijan GP investigation | F1 | sport
McLaren man Lando Norris has defended fellow Briton Lewis Hamilton, after the two were investigated by the FIA following the first qualifying round of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. Hamilton and Norris were investigated by the governing body for allegedly driving too slowly.
Controversy erupted in the closing stages of Q1, after Aston Martin driver Lance Stroll crashed at turn two, forcing a late red flag. This resulted in a chaotic 15-car stampede as those struggling on the wrong side of the field battled to secure a place in Q2.
In the last moments, Norris finds himself just behind Hamilton but does not take the opportunity to overtake him. After the chaos, Hamilton and Norris were summoned by the race marshals, due to their lack of pace in the final race.
In the end, the two left the investigation unpunished, but the McLaren man was less than impressed that he and his fellow Englishman had been called up in the first place. Defending Hamilton’s defensive move, Norris said: “It wasn’t unnecessary, it was necessary. He wanted a wake, I wanted a wake.
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“And I didn’t want to pass him because of that. So he didn’t do anything wrong, it’s racing. It was like second gear or something. Norris even hinted that it wasn’t the first time he’s seen this tactic unfold, after revealing his now team-mate Daniel Ricciardo had done it to him before as well.
He continued: “Daniel did it to me a few years ago. Everyone knows it happens here sometimes. I don’t think he did anything wrong. I probably would have done the same thing if I had been in his boat.Speaking of danger on the track, the McLaren star felt the huge rush out of the pits during Q1 was more of a safety threat than Hamilton’s tactics.
“I think what’s much worse and more dangerous is when everyone comes out of the pits at the end of Q1, and it’s just free for everyone,” he added. “And you have people crossing the start/finish line. It’s more dangerous, because people take risks by doing things.
“Whereas when it’s like me and Lewis, Daniel was just a bit late and obviously Daniel didn’t want to pass either. But I think nothing is fair. I think what he did was all quite reasonable, he was on the side, he wanted to let me pass, I didn’t want to pass in front, there was no one around us in the pushed turns.