Here’s a summary of paddock view points on the Lewis/Kimi incident from last weekend: Had Hamilton followed Raikkonen through the chicane in the normal way, he would not have been close enough – or, certainly, not as close as he was – when the pair crossed the start/finish line.
Forget for a moment how the stewards reached their decision, the feeling in the media centre here is that a truly fantastic race – indeed, a great weekend after the bitterness of Spa last year – has been tainted by Formula One policing itself in a manner that makes it look incompetent.
Don’t know if you saw the GP2 race here this afternoon. It made dramatic viewing, which can be a nuisance when you’re trying to write a story on deadline for a Sunday newspaper on the F1 qualifying that preceded the GP2 and these guys are racing like there is no tomorrow.
About time Kovalainen had some luck. There may have been a stroke of good fortune about Heikki’s first win but it would make up for the series of problems (loose wheel in Spain and big shunt; bad Safety Car in Melbourne; steering wheel electronics in Monaco) that had compromised his first season with McLaren-Mercedes.
What a difference a year makes. This was the race in 2007 when the McLaren team began to tear itself apart as Hamilton and Alonso worked to their own agendas during qualifying. 12 months later, Hamilton and Kovalainen are best mates after giving McLaren the front row for the first time since Monza last year.
Lewis Hamilton spends about 15 minutes with the written media as a matter of routine on the Thursday before each Grand Prix. The session is broken into three parts; international media first, reducing to the British daily press and then leaving about five minutes with the top British driver for the Sunday papers.