Formula 1: Lewis Hamilton and Charles Leclerc disqualified after United States Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton and Charles Leclerc were disqualified after the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix. (Photo by Dan Istitene – Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images) (Dan Istitene – Formula 1 via Getty Images)

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc were disqualified from the United States Grand Prix for technical violations found after the conclusion of the race.

The FIA said after the race that skids on both Hamilton and Leclerc’s cars were “found not to be in compliance” with the rules and regulations. Per the F1 site, “both teams sent a representative to speak to the stewards, stating that ‘the high wear on the skid pads was probably a result of the unique combination of the bumpy track and the sprint race schedule that minimized the time to set up and check the car before the race.’”

The FIA said in its statement that “the onus is on the competitor to ensure that the car is in compliance with the regulations at all times during an event. In this particular case, the rear skid in the area defined in the Technical Delegate’s report was outside the thresholds outlined” in the specific rule that the teams violated.

Hamilton finished second to race winner Max Verstappen while Leclerc finished sixth. The disqualifications mean that neither driver earns points for their efforts on Sunday and significantly complicates Hamilton’s chances of catching Red Bull’s Sergio Perez for second place in the points standings.

Perez’s teammate Verstappen won his 15th race of the season Sunday and clinched his third consecutive Formula 1 title in Qatar. Perez entered Sunday’s race 27 points ahead of Hamilton as Hamilton finished second and Perez finished fifth.

In the moments after the race, it appeared that Hamilton had cut the deficit to Perez to 19 points with four races to go. But now Perez is up 39 points on Hamilton ahead of the final four races of the season.

Mercedes brought its final upgrades of the season to the Circuit of the Americas and had a car that was capable of challenging Verstappen’s Red Bull. As Verstappen struggled with brake issues over the final laps of the race, Hamilton closed on the race winner and finished just over two seconds behind. Hamilton also finished second to Verstappen in Saturday’s sprint race.

While Hamilton remains in third in the points standings, the disqualification drops Leclerc to seventh behind McLaren’s Lando Norris. Norris finished third behind Verstappen and Hamilton and was bumped up to second after the disqualification.

Updated United States Grand Prix finishing order

1. Max Verstappen, Red Bull

2. Lando Norris, McLaren

3. Carlos Sainz, Ferrari

4. Sergio Perez, Red Bull

5. George Russell, Mercedes

6. Pierre Gasly, Alpine

7. Lance Stroll, Aston Martin

8. Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri

9. Alex Albon, Williams

10. Logan Sargeant, Williams

11. Nico Hulkenberg, Haas

12. Valtteri Bottas, Alfa Romeo

13. Zhou Guanyu, Alfa Romeo

14. Kevin Magnussen, Haas

15. Daniel Ricciardo, AlphaTauri

Not classified:
Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin
Oscar Piastri, McLaren
Esteban Ocon, Alpine

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes
Charles Leclerc, Ferrari

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