“Just saying sorry at the end is unacceptable” - Lewis Hamilton blasts FIA for questioning Susie Wolff
Lewis Hamilton has lambasted the FIA over its investigation of F1 Academy manager Susie Wolff and her husband Toto Wolff. Hamilton was disappointed with how the governing body handled the situation over the past weekend.
The FIA's compliance department announced an investigation into the Wolff family after allegedly receiving complaints from rival team principals about a confidential breach between FOM and Toto Wolff.
After the rest of the nine teams denied making any complaints to the FIA in a unilateral move, the governing body announced that it dropped the investigation. Two days after launching the investigation, it concluded that F1's compliance rules were sufficiently robust.
Following the dramatic turn of events over the last weekend, Mercedes ace Lewis Hamilton said that the way FIA treated Susie Wolff was 'unacceptable'. Speaking to Sky Sports at the end-of-season awards ceremony, he said:
"It has been a challenging week, I think a disappointing week really to see that the governing body of our sport has sought to question the integrity of one of the most incredible female leaders we've ever had in our sport, with Susie Wolff, without questioning, without any evidence. And then just saying sorry at the end, and that's just unacceptable."
Lewis Hamilton also called for a change in the leadership within the FIA, as he stated that "certain individuals" were hindering the progress the sport has been trying to make in terms of diversity and inclusion. He said:
"We've got a lot of great people within the sport that are doing amazing work."
"There is a constant fight to really improve diversity and inclusion within the industry, but it seems that there are certain individuals in the leadership within the FIA that, every time we try to make a step forward, they try to pull us back, and that has to change," he added.
Susie Wolff released a statement promising to follow up on the happenings to find out who instigated the campaign and misled the media. Meanwhile, Toto Wolff indicated that Mercedes is in an "active legal exchange with the FIA" concerning the situation.
Lewis Hamilton throws shade at Aston Martin's 2023 campaign
The seven-time F1 champion threw shade at Aston Martin's roller coaster 2023 campaign, as he underlined the risks of cloning Red Bull for the upcoming season.
As Mercedes continued to understand the ground effects regulation, Lewis Hamilton reckoned throwing away their current work and copying Red Bull wasn't the right way forward.
"The thing is, with the timeline you have, and the limited resources you have, you can’t just throw it away and start from scratch. You can’t copy a car and start from that," the Brit was quoted as saying by motorsport.com.
"Look at the Astons. They tried to copy a car and it wasn’t the same. It is not as easy as that. You have to try and take the good parts and through trial and error just try to add other parts," he added.
However, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff has promised a complete overhaul for their 2024 challenger.