Firstly I have to say congratulations to Max Verstappen. He drove an astonishing race holding off Kimi Räikkönen towards the end. I mean for goodness sake, he’s 18 years old, where on earth does he get the confidence and skill from? Anyway, let’s move on to the main subject.
It happened at Spa in 2014 and it’s happened again at Spain in 2016. The two Mercedes’ drivers came together. Neither driver will get any kind of penalty. However, I believe this is a major turning point in the season.
The most pivotal question I have is this; can these two drivers continue racing in the same team? After today, I’m not sure. Rosberg’s contract runs out this year and there was a wild rumour that Hamilton would take a sabbatical in 2017. I can’t see the latter happening, Hamilton isn’t going anywhere. I believe Rosberg will sign a new contract within the next few months however. So it looks like Hamilton nor Rosberg are going anywhere so Mercedes will have their work cut out and will need to try and resolve this so it doesn’t happen, ever again.
Although both drivers were understandably gutted, Rosberg would have felt better out of the two drivers as the standings remain the same between them both yet Hamilton has one less race to try and catch Rosberg’s lead. Hamilton’s torrid season continues. Yesterday looked like it might’ve been the turning point, he put in a great qualifying lap which put him on pole position and the car looked good.
The stewards deemed it a ‘racing incident’ and as I mentioned just a minute ago, neither driver has received a penalty. Hamilton however is on a knife’s edge because when (not if) he gets his third reprimand, he’ll get a 10-place grid penalty and because of the cars unreliability early on, he’s used far more engine parts than Rosberg and is close to receiving a 10-place grid penalty for using more than five power units in one season. In two of the remaining 16 races, it’s highly likely Hamilton will start the race in 11th or below.
The next race is at Monaco where qualifying is vital. Overtaking is near impossible and you might remember we had drama last year as Hamilton was comfortably leading the race but got called into the pits and fell behind Rosberg and Vettel and finished third. The European season has started and Hamilton must win in Monaco if he has any chance of catching Rosberg in the standings.