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Hamilton escapes blocking penalty

Lewis Hamilton will start from eighth on the Japanese GP grid after escaping a blocking penalty at Suzuka.
Lewis Hamilton has avoided the possibility of dropping even further down the Japanese Grand Prix grid after race stewards rejected claims that he had impeded a rival during Sunday morning's delayed qualifying session.

The Briton was already facing a five-place drop on the grid after being forced to change the gearbox in his McLaren, reportedly the legacy of his collision with Mark Webber in Singapore, and, when Williams protested his tactics in final qualifying, Hamilton faced the prospect of starting even further back than the eighth place he finds himself in at Suzuka.

The 2008 world champion was accused of backing off too much in order to give himself a clear lap for qualifying, holding Williams' Nico Hulkenberg in the process. The young German claimed that the gap Hamilton created was excessive because there was no car immediately ahead of him, but the stewards decided that there was no case to answer, and rejected the option of adding to the Briton's earlier penalty.

With Hulkenberg lining up ninth, the two will start together on the grid, sandwiched between the second Williams of Rubens Barrichello and the Mercedes of seven-time champion Michael Schumacher.




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Kevin Magnussen (DEN) McLaren MP4-29.
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Kevin Magnussen (DEN) McLaren MP4-29.
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The Mercedes AMG F1 W05 of Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 is recovered back to the pits.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
The Mercedes AMG F1 W05 of Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 is recovered back to the pits.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
The Mercedes AMG F1 W05 of Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 is recovered back to the pits.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams FW36.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Kevin Magnussen (DEN) McLaren MP4-29.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Kevin Magnussen (DEN) McLaren MP4-29 running sensor equipment.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Kevin Magnussen (DEN) McLaren MP4-29 running sensor equipment.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 running sensor equipment.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams FW36.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1.
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