McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh has said 'his' team have accepted the reprimand and $10,000 fine dished out by the stewards after Canadian GP pole winner Lewis Hamilton stopped out on track after taking P1 on Saturday.
Hamilton was ordered to bring the car to a halt on his in lap due to concerns about the level of fuel left in the car – with a fuel sample being needed for post-qualifying checks.
Having turned off the engine of his car, Hamilton coasted to a stop before jumping from the car and pushing it down the circuit. When it eventually came to a halt, Hamilton returned to the pits in the back of the Safety Car.
With F1 regulations stating that a driver has to complete his in lap in a certain amount of time, stewards looked into the incident following the session but elected to let Hamilton's qualifying time stand, much to the surprise of some of McLaren rivals as a memo had been issued the previous day to warn them that cars had to be back in the pits within a certain time limit.
"We've accepted it, we'll pay it, and we'll move on," Whitmarsh told reporters today according to Reuters
. "We have complied with the regulations, we didn't set out to do this.
"It wasn't Lewis's fault. We had a choice, we could have come back to the garage but having done so we would have been short of fuel on our sample so we chose the decision that the regulation requires us. We thought that was the dominant requirement rather than an FIA memo."
Asked if this might led to similar situations in the future, Whitmarsh denied it will set a precedent.
"As I said, it wasn't deliberate," he added to grandprix.com
, "and people would run the risk of the stewards deciding that it was systematic, so I don't think that it will happen a lot in the future."