Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes should lick their wounds and learn from the mistakes made in Sunday’s Russian Grand Prix, their former boss turned Formula 1 managing director for motorsport Ross Brawn said on Monday.
Six-times world champion Hamilton collected two five-second penalties in Sochi for practising starts in the wrong place, punishments that put on hold his bid for a record-equalling 91st win.
The Briton, who finished third after starting on pole position, accused stewards of trying to stop him but Brawn, who sold his team to Mercedes after winning the drivers’ and constructors’ titles in 2009, put it down a combination of bad luck and mistakes on the day.
“Personally, I would go away, lick my wounds and think about how I could prevent such incidences again in the future,” he said in a column on the official F1 website.
“That´s what I know the team will be doing. I know many of the people, from my time at the team, and they will recognise they have made some mistakes.
“Bad luck and mistakes happen, it´s how you respond that matters. It´s easy to think the world is against you, but there is nearly always something you could have done differently and you can learn from.”
Mercedes, who won with Valtteri Bottas, were fined 25,000 euros ($29,137) by stewards for clearing Hamilton to practise his starts where he did.
Hamilton was initially given two penalty points, which would have left him perilously close to a race ban, but the stewards overturned that after accepting the team’s responsibility.
The Briton, who is still four points away from a ban, said he would have to be ‘squeaky clean’ in future.
“I guess we´ll go through the rule book and pick out areas where they can create rules, areas where penalties have never been given before,” he said.
“We´ve gone through seasons before without penalties so I just have to make sure I give them no reason, not even a sniff to be able to do something.”
Team boss Toto Wolff said Mercedes would just have to “take it on the chin and move on”.