FIA revisit of Hamilton rule breach is a dangerous game

TigerGaming Poker 100% up To $1000 Welcome Bonus

The FIA's decision to revisit 's Qatar Grand Prix
infringement of walking across the track has caused quite a stir.
Seven-time champion Hamilton was handed a €50,000 fine – of which
€25,000 was suspended – and a first non-driving reprimand of the
season for crossing the live race track following his first corner
crash with Mercedes teammate George Russell at the Lusail
International Circuit. In a statement a week after the incident,
the FIA confirmed it would look back at the issue due to Hamilton's
“role model status”. Here's why this sets a dangerous precedent.
Singled out The wording of the statement released by 's governing
body was deemed “unnecessary” and “clumsy” by pundit and sportscar
driver Alex Brundle and it is hard to disagree with that point. Any
suggestion that a driver could be singled out because of who they
are is a troubling prospect for the sport moving forward. For many,
the incident was already dealt with by the race stewards in Qatar,
with a swift post-race investigation determining Hamilton should be
hit with the fine and reprimand. Safety, of course, is of paramount
importance to all involved in the sport but no more so to the FIA,
which has done a tremendous job in creating an F1 world which is
the safest it has ever been. Extensive research and investigations
into previous issues have been key in making such improvements and
certainly no one will take aim over this. Whether the reopening of
this case was in some way triggered by a distressing incident in a
Karting World Championship race on the same day is unclear, but
with Joe Turney now recovering from surgery following severe leg
injuries when hit as he attempted to rejoin the race, perhaps the
FIA is seeking to underline that being active on a live race track
brings consequences. Benefit of the doubt will suggest that any of
the 20 drivers on the F1 grid could have been subjected to this
re-investigation and the subsequent ‘role model' statement, but
there will be plenty who believe that Hamilton has been circled due
to his stature. Whilst that sets a dangerous precedent in itself,
the question can now be asked: ‘Is there a list of drivers deemed
of a higher ‘role model status' in the eyes of the governing body?'
Fan optics One cannot forget the influx of new-wave fans in the
past half-decade thanks to the popularisation of the sport
initiated by Netflix's Drive to Survive series. Race attendance is
booming with scores of fans – hardcore and casual – dressed up in
the latest F1 merchandise to support their drivers. The world of
social media has brought about a certain tribalism to supporting a
driver, almost soccer-like, with fans often opposing others in
their views when a flashpoint takes place over a weekend, armed
with footage from previous races in previous years to back their
rhetoric. It has been no different in the aftermath of the FIA's
statement, with fans suggesting Hamilton is being unfairly targeted
by the FIA. It's not the first time such accusations have been made
– Sebastian Vettel hit out over the jewellery crackdown last season
which he believed was focused on the Mercedes driver in particular.
Some fans have brought up footage of Hamilton and Max Verstappen's
collision at the 2021 Italian Grand Prix, where the Dutchman walks
across the racing line on his way back to the pits in the aftermath
of the crash, and have asked where the investigation was then.
There has also been the not-so-unlikely hark back to the
controversial 2021 season finale in Abu Dhabi, with fans on X
[formerly Twitter] questioning why decisions can be re-investigated
all of a sudden, despite the above – and other decisions – being
classed as closed post-decision, unless an appeal has been lodged.
For a new generation of fan, the sport, be it F1 or the FIA, has to
display consistency across drivers, teams and seasons to ensure
these optics aren't created. Damage outweighs the positives It
would, however, be superfluous to suggest there is any bias against
a driver within the FIA, or that the governing body is out to
target a specific individual. Safety is always at the forefront of
its work and if there is a genuine concern, the FIA undoubtedly has
to act – there is no questioning that. But the phraseology used to
reveal its decision to reopen Hamilton's case has opened the FIA up
to unwanted and unnecessary backlash and ridicule within the
fanbase, regardless of what the outcome of the investigation will
be. What doesn't help its cause is the fact Logan Sargeant had
crossed the race track to get to the pits following his crash in
Japanese Grand Prix qualifying – is he not a role model? Of course
he is – he is supposed to be America's poster boy for F1, the
US-born driver the sport has so long craved as it hits the market
across the Atlantic. Time will tell what the FIA will find from
reopening the incident review but so far, it feels as though the
damage will outweigh whatever positive is found.

Wild Casino - Welcome Crypto Package Up To $9,000