Lewis plowing close to the corn on engine penalties

If you’ve been following our own Dave M. and his pre-race engine updates, then you’ll know that things are getting very tight in the usage allotment and will start leading to grid penalties very soon. If you’re not reading them, then I can’t make any excuses for you, you’ll have to wrestle that to the ground yourself but like all missed opportunities, you have a chance to blame the couch in Stevenage and school bullying for your misfortune and who doesn’t want that?

You see, it seems that the early-season troubles laboring Lewis Hamilton have now positioned him on thin ice with regards to the MGU-H and turbocharger units and he is using the last of his five allowed for the 2016 season. As AUTOSPORT points out, he’s on his third MGU-K and fourth ERS. He’s squarely on his third world championship and if he has any hope of making it four this season, he’ll need to avoid the penalties that come with using a sixth anything…MGU-H, MGU-K or ERS.

The penalty? It’s a ten-place grid penalty for each infraction and at that point, it’ll be difficult to make any serious charge for the title if insuring penalties are the norm going forward.

“The worst thing is I’m the only Mercedes driver to have that,” he said.

“For sure it’s difficult for us as a team and it’s difficult considering we are the Mercedes team, so if there’s 40 engines, you would hope that we have the best of the 40.

“That’s just the way it goes, I’ll just have to do the best I can with the one I have now and hopefully with the next one or two I get beyond that.

“It’s not easy when you look at the table and you see eight Mercedes drivers and everyone else is on a normal plan and on a second engine and still has four left and I have one left.”

That may be the worst thing in the present but ultimately the worst thing is not winning the title because that’s how Lewis is wired. He’s spent a lifetime plying his skills to win titles and to not do so is hard to take. It’s harshing his buzz on life and success in Formula 1.

Now, having said that, it’s the same for everyone and there’s nothing to say that his teammate and point leader, Nico Rosberg, might not start to experience issues himself. Things happen and you need no further proof than Lewis’s current situation to tell you that.

For Lewis’s sake and for the sake of a close championship and fun racing, I hope Lewis ceases to have any more engine issues and that the lumps they have left can be effectively managed by the team to give Lewis the best shot he can get at staying out of the penalty box and on the sharp end of the grid.


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I would hope that all the 40 Mercedes power units were extremely close in terms of performance and reliability. It is unfortunate that Hamilton has suffered the failures of components so far, but I think we are some way from the late 60s and early 70s when Jackie Stewart was given Cosworth’s most powerful engine.

Junipero Mariano

Quite the double whammy. Not only does the faulty part contribute to putting you behind during the present race, it’s going to kick you in the rear towards the end of the season, too!


Has anyone heard about a Renault upgrade for this weekend? I ask because both Ricciardo and Magnussen have taken their third ICE, TC, MGU-H and MGU-K. This is only two races after they both had the last upgraded PU was fitted for Canada.

I have seen that Ferrari have spent one of their remaining tokens on a MGU-K upgrade, but not heard anything about Renault. If they haven’t upgraded it does question their reliability for the rest of the season.


I’ve looked for some official site listing the current token usage, and can’t seem to find one. Strange, you’d think this information would be publicly accessible – unless I just haven’t looked hard enough.


“…it’s the same for everyone…” Hogwash. It’s only the same for whomever has a mechanical failure.
By the way, is F1 now going penalize any driver that busts a wing for driving back to the pits?
And to think that to find a joke on Sunday I used to read the comics in the newspaper.
F1 has truly supplanted that from when my interest started in 1965.