Lewis Hamilton came under fire from his fellow drivers after he weaved in front of Vitaly Petrov during the Malaysian Grand Prix.
There has long been an informal understanding that drivers are only allowed to make one move on a straight, but Hamilton insisted that he was trying to break the tow rather than to block the Renault driver (right). He received a black and white warning flag during the race, but no other penalty.
“The ruling was fair at the race, and I believe [FIA race director] Charlie [Whiting] took the right decision,” said Hamilton. “Obviously he gave us a warning for it not to happen again. I discussed it with him, and he made it clear it’s not what he wants to see.
“It’s not that clear what is defending, and [what is] breaking the tow. That’s not made clear in the rules, but Charlie has made it clear now and we won’t be doing that.
“A lesson learned, and we move forward. I don’t understand why everyone was fussing. It wasn’t a problem for me.”
Hamilton’s exploits continued at the next race, the Chinese GP, where he was reprimanded along with Sebastian Vettel for dangerous driving in the pitlane. Vettel’s Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber also complained that Hamilton had driven him off the road after the second safety car restart.