Lewis Hamilton hit by grid penalty
SHANGHAI - Lewis Hamilton’s hopes of winning a first grand prix of the season took a big hit on Thursday when he was slapped with a five-place grid penalty for a change of gearbox.
It means that the McLaren driver, who has cut a frustrated figure after finishing third in the first two races of the season despite starting on pole, will begin Sunday’s race no higher than sixth.
“Gearbox issue,” was all the 2008 world champion would say initially. Prompted for more information, he smiled.
But asked by journalists once again for more details, Hamilton, who won in Shanghai last year, said: “They (the team) only found out (the transmission problem) in the last 48 hours.
“There’s an issue somewhere and I don’t know all the details.
“But that’s racing. It doesn’t alter my approach.”