Lewis Hamilton proposes AI intervention after Max Verstappen controversy causes FIA backlash

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton wants the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to be used by F1 stewards to eliminate errors in judgment. 

This plea has come from the seven-time world champion on the back of FIA itself agreeing that some of the decisions made during qualifying may not have been up to scratch.

This has naturally once again sparked the debate on consistency when it comes to officiating in the sport, perhaps more so because it involved Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.

Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton. Credit: planetf1.com
Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton. Credit: planetf1.com

Verstappen has been in scintillating form this season, but was under scrutiny on three occasions due to his actions on the track.

The Dutchman was believed to be obstructing drivers as a result of coming out of the pit lane slowly.

Verstappen himself admitted that he made a mistake.

“That was not good. I didn’t see him because I was on the radio talking about what was the problem,” he said.

“And then I didn’t get a call-up until he was basically behind me. 

“It basically sums up my qualifying, it was just super hectic and messy.”

While many anticipated that this would lead to a three-place grid penalty, the stewards only ended up reprimanding the 25-year-old.

They based this decision on the premise that Red Bull failed to inform Verstappen about Yuki Tsunoda’s approach.

Since then, though, the stewards have owned up to an error in judgment and Matteo Perini, who was a steward for both the Japanese and Singapore GPs, personally met with team bosses in Suzuka to confess their mistake with regard to the magnitude of Verstappen’s penalty.

Hamilton expects better from FIA

Hamilton, meanwhile, was far from happy with how FIA chose to settle the score. He felt that the clarification from the sport’s governing body was not sufficient.

“Not really. That rule has been the same for ages,” he said.

“I think we need to start looking into AI for this sort of thing, so we get good decisions.” 

Hamilton then said that he was keen to see if the job could be performed better if the sport incorporated the use of AI.

“I would like to see whether AI could do a better job or not,” he said.

Russell, Sainz critical of FIA reprimand

While George Russell and Carlos Sainz didn’t outrightly say that stewards were showing favouritism towards Verstappen, they also expressed their disappointment at how events unfolded.

“It was definitely a bit strange to see even Max got away with those reprimands last week,” Russell said.

“We obviously always look for consistency. We appreciate it’s not easy in the best of times, but last week was obviously a bit of a slam dunk. 

“So it was strange why it didn’t happen.”

Sainz, meanwhile, was bitter about the fact that Verstappen of all people was allowed to get away with the mistake.

“It’s just a shame that the guy that is dominating and winning pretty much every race is the only one that gets away with it, while all the others we’ve had penalties this year,” Sainz said.

“And when I say everyone, everyone has pretty much had penalties. 

“So it’s a bit strange, and yeah, hopefully they learn from it.”

Read more: FIA dishes out penalty to F1 team for trying to con them by using ‘third car’ during Japanese Grand Prix

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