The 2008 Monaco Grand Prix hasn’t long finished, but already there are news stories coming out of the principality that add further light to the exciting and intriguing race that was held under changeable weather conditions. Among the most interesting quotes is McLaren F1 CEO Martin Whitmarsh admit that Lewis Hamilton’s MP4-23 finished the race with a puncture. Also, Adrian Sutil has been reprimanded for overtaking under yellow flags, taking the wind of Mike Gascoyne’s sails after he was upset with Raikkonen’s accident that saw Sutil’s retirement.
According to Autosport, Whitmarsh has spoken of a problem with Hamilton’s tyre, perhaps after running over the debris remaining from Nico Rosberg’s sizable accident. The incident that left pieces of the Williams all over the track forced the drivers to weave around the area, and it is thought that this may have resulted in Hamilton picking up a slow puncture.
We had a look, there was a bit of floor damage, we checked and when a tyre comes in flailing. We checked it and structurally it was fine. But he had a puncture on the slow down lap as well. We were lucky in that regard. It was a right rear puncture… probably from debris from Nico’s accident. Martin Whitmarsh.
McLaren are lucky the race was called to an end at the two hour mark and not allowed to continue to lap 78. Also among Whitmarsh’s explanations was one for Heikki’s apparent stall on the grid. Kovalainen’s race was essentially ruined by his failing to leave the grid on the warm-up lap, and the Finnish driver was forced to start from the pitlane in last position. However, it turns out that the stall was not Heikki’s fault.
It was a software glitch that robbed him of control of the clutch before the start, so we had to reset that, so he was very, very unlucky and did a fantastic job. Martin Whitmarsh.
And as reported just now on BlogF1, Mike Gascoyne has asked the Monaco stewards to look at the Raikkonen incident that saw the retirement of Adrian Sutil from a stunning fourth place. Had Sutil finished, it would have been his and the team’s first points and an award justly deserved after the German’s race. However, both Sutil and Gascoyne were summoned to the stewards’ office anyway, although not for what they were expecting.
Sutil had passed a string of cars on lap 13, including Rubens Barrichello, Kazuki Nakajima and Nelson Piquet Jr., all done while the circuit was covered under yellow flags.
The stewards do want to warn the driver of car no.20 as to his future behaviour in relation to appendix H, Chapter 2, Article 4.1.2b of the international sporting code. Steward’s Statement.
The stewards have issued Sutil with a warning, and undoubtedly if the German driver commits a similar infraction in the future will be more heavily reprimanded.