STINGING ATTACK: Mercedes accuse Red Bull after Silverstone incident
Mercedes have launched a stinging attack on Red Bull by accusing their Formula One rivals of a “concerted attempt to tarnish Lewis Hamilton’s good name and sporting integrity”.
Less than an hour after it emerged Red Bull failed in their bid for Hamilton’s 10-second penalty following his opening-lap collision with Max Verstappen at the British Grand Prix to be reviewed, Mercedes went on the offensive.
In a statement, the world champions said: “The Mercedes F1 Team welcomes the decision of the stewards to reject Red Bull Racing’s right of review.
“In addition to bringing this incident to a close, we hope that this decision will mark the end of a concerted attempt by the senior management of Red Bull Racing to tarnish the good name and sporting integrity of Lewis Hamilton, including in the documents submitted for their unsuccessful right of review.
“We now look forward to going racing this weekend and to continuing our hard-fought competition for the 2021 Formula One World Championship.”
It is understood that Red Bull’s evidence log, which was presented to the British Grand Prix stewards via a conference call on Thursday afternoon, accused Hamilton of driving dangerously and, in effect, causing the collision on purpose.
In a statement F1’s governing body, the FIA, said the stewards noted “with some concern, certain allegations made” by Red Bull who felt Hamilton’s punishment was too lenient.
Team principal Christian Horner even claimed at Silverstone that Hamilton put Verstappen’s life in jeopardy following the 180mph shunt.
Hamilton recovered from the penalty to claim a controversial win, while Verstappen did not score a point after his afternoon ended in the barriers and latterly hospital.
Red Bull presented a crash dossier to the British GP stewards in the hope that Hamilton’s punishment would be reviewed.
The document, understood to be more than 20 pages, included a number of slides using GPS data of Hamilton’s collision with Verstappen and a comparison of the Briton’s race-winning move on Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc at the same corner.
Red Bull even performed a re-enactment of Hamilton’s first lap of the British Grand Prix using their reserve driver Alex Albon during a filming day at Silverstone last week.
But the FIA panel ruled that Red Bull’s evidence did not carry enough fresh evidence to warrant a re-trial.
As such, Hamilton’s 99th win stands with the world champion heading into this weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix just eight points adrift of Verstappen.
Watch the channel on TV