Lewis Hamilton does not have good luck in France. Of all the races he's won in these past two seasons, he's yet to take the checkered flag at the French Grand Prix, has had his license revoked by the French gendarmes, and has now had his appeal thrown out of court in Paris.
Following the Belgian Grand Prix earlier this month, Hamilton was penalized by the race stewards with a 25-second penalty (in lieu of a pit-lane drive-through penalty) that bumped him down from first place to third, and allowed Ferrari's Felipe Massa to close the lead down to one single point. The penalty was given to Hamilton for having cut through a chicane on the Spa-Francorchamps track called the "bus stop", which race officials ruled gave him an illegal advantage. Hamilton's team McLaren decided to appeal the penalty in the FIA's court in Paris, however the court threw out the case as inadmissible, quoting sporting regulations that stipulate that drive-through penalties cannot be appealed. McLaren presented precedent from a repealed penalty handed to Toro Rosso in Japan last year, however the court of appeal was adamant in their refusal to hear the case.
A brief statement from the FIA can be found after the jump, and those interested can read the full 8-page ruling by clicking here.
[Source: Autosport | Photo: Oliver Laban-Mattei/Getty]
Statement from the FIA:
At the Grand Prix of Belgium, run on 7 September 2008, and counting towards the 2008 FIA Formula One World Championship, the Stewards of the meeting imposed a drive-through penalty upon the driver of car No.22, Lewis Hamilton, for a breach of Article 30.3 (a) of the 2008 FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations and Appendix L, Chapter 4, Article 2 (g) of the International Sporting Code.
As the drive-through penalty was imposed at the end of the race, 25 seconds were added to the driver's elapsed race time in accordance with Article 16.3 of the FIA 2008 Formula One Sporting Regulations.
Article 152 of the International Sporting Code states that drive-through penalties are "not susceptible to appeal."
The competitor Vodafone McLaren Mercedes appealed the Steward's decision before the International Court of Appeal in a hearing in Paris on September 22nd.
Having heard the explanations of the parties the Court has concluded that the appeal is inadmissible."