Mercedes' Brazil Grand Prix appeal rejected

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Lewis Hamilton went on to win the race after the incident involving the Mercedes driver and championship rival Max Verstappen (AFP/NELSON ALMEIDA)
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Formula One officials have rejected the request by Mercedes for a review of Max Verstappen's driving during the Sao Paulo Grand Prix, motorsport's governing body said on Friday.

Verstappen appeared to force Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes wide but the FIA said the team's appeal failed to raise significant new evidence in the case.

After the incident, Hamilton passed Verstappen 11 laps later and went to win the race last Sunday, cutting the gap on the Dutchman to 14 points.

Mercedes had based its review on the argument that footage from the on-board camera from both cars had not been available when stewards decided not to investigate during the race at Interlagos.

Hamilton tried to overtake Verstappen around the outside on a turn but the Red Bull driver ran wide and both ended up off the track in the run-off area.

The Mercedes driver, who had started 10th on the grid, went on to win and described it as "the best weekend I have experienced in probably my whole career".

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said the ruling not to penalise Verstappen was "completely expected".

"We wanted to trigger discussion around it because it probably will be a theme in the next few races," Wolff added. "We didn't really think it would go any further."

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner called it the right decision.

"Otherwise, it would have opened a Pandora's box regarding a whole bunch of other incidents that happened in that race," Horner said.

"I think the most important thing now is to focus on this Grand Prix. We want a good, clean, fair fight."

Both drivers will lock horns again at the first ever Qatar Grand Prix on Sunday.


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