F1 2011 Belgian Grand Prix: Hamilton takes blame for Spa crash
PUBLISHED: 11:09 29 August 2011 | UPDATED: 16:06 29 August 2011
FORMULA 1 driver Lewis Hamilton has apologised to his McLaren team and taken the blame for the collision which saw him crash out of Sunday’s 2011 Belgian Grand Prix.
The 26-year-old Vodafone McLaren Mercedes ace from Hertfordshire was involved in an incident with the Sauber of Kamui Kobayashi on lap 13 at the Spa-Francorchamps circuit.
Having just overtaken the Japanese driver, the pair collide as Kobayashi came back up the outside of Hamilton as they approached the corner at Les Combes.
Hamilton moved to take the racing line, seemingly unaware of Kobayashi’s position, and ended up smashing through an advertising hoarding into the barrier.
Straight after the race, Hamilton said: “I was in a good position and I’d already got past one of the Ferraris, but then I was hit by Kamui [Kobayashi].
"After watching the replay, I realize it was my fault today 100%."
“I don’t really know what happened, but I hit the wall pretty hard and my race was immediately over. I was ahead, so I don’t know why I got hit.”
McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh added: “I thought he [Lewis] was extremely unlucky to be tapped from behind by Kamui – and, as we all saw all too clearly, the result was a pretty nasty shunt.”
However, Hamilton now admits he didn’t give the Sauber man enough room.
After watching the incident again, the 2008 F1 world champion took to social networking site Twitter to take the blame for the crash.
He tweeted: “After watching the replay, I realize it was my fault today 100%. I didn’t give Kobayashi enough room though I thought I was past.”
Hamilton added: “Apologies to Kamui and to my team. The team deserves better from me.”
One Hamilton follower, Mike Pearson, tweeted back: “Your error maybe Lewis - but is not Kobayashi professional enough to realise what line you would take into that corner?”
To see the Twitter exchanges, click on the Lewis Hamilton Twitter link above right.
Hamilton’s spectacular Spa crash came just a day after his qualifying prang with Pastor Maldonado, which saw the Williams driver handed a five-place grid penalty by race stewards. Hamilton was given a reprimand for that incident.
But stewards took no action over the Hamilton-Kobayashi crash.
* The F1 circus heads to Monza next for the 2011 Italian Grand Prix on Sunday, September 11.
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