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Webber calls for more leniency

Mark Webber says stewards need to be more lenient after penalty handed to Felipe Massa in India
Mark Webber has called for more leniency from F1 stewards after the latest clash between Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa in the Indian Grand Prix.

The pair clashed at turn five during the race, with Massa being handed a drive-through penalty after turning in on Hamilton as the McLaren man tried to make a move up the inside.

The incident sparked differing views from onlookers, with Johny Herbert – part of the stewards panel for the weekend – saying the penalty to Massa was justified, but David Coulthard insisting it was a harsh call and that Hamilton was more to blame as the following driver.

However, in his latest column for the BBC, Red Bull driver Webber said he felt it was more of a racing incident and should have been allowed to pass without penalty to either driver.

“You could argue all day about the rights and wrongs of the latest crash involving Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa but it was a 50-50 incident in my opinion,” he said. “It was the age-old thing. Lewis went for it, Felipe was still going to commit to the corner, then Lewis tried to back off and couldn't. F1 is getting into a bit of a road-car culture with penalties. The attitude seems to be that someone must be to blame when there is an incident.

“In this case, the stewards thought Felipe could have given Lewis a bit more room and therefore handed him a drive-through penalty. Yes, Felipe could have made space for Lewis but, in my view, it wasn't clear-cut.

“The drivers have always said that they want the stewards to be consistent - and, to be fair, that's what they are trying to be. If someone's had an absolute howler, then fine, give them a penalty but sometimes it might be better just to say it was one of those things - what we call in F1 'a racing incident' - and let it go.”



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