Lewis Hamilton

FIA issue instruction to impound Hamilton's rear wing

The rear wing used by Lewis Hamilton during qualifying in Brazil has been impounded by the race stewards.

Article
To news overview © Mercedes

The rear wing at the heart of F1's latest controversy has been impounded by the stewards at Interlagos, ahead of this weekend's Sao Paulo Grand Prix.

Lewis Hamilton finished qualifying as the fastest man and is set to start Saturday's Sprint Qualifying race from top spot. However, his rear wing became the focus of a technical investigation after the session, when it was found that his DRS (Drag Reduction System) appeared to open more than the permitted 85 millimetres.

After a lengthy investigation, the FIA have adjourned their hearing until Saturday morning at Interlagos and, as a result, have ordered the impounding of Hamilton's rear wing.

"The stewards hereby order the Technical Delegate [Jo Bauer] to supervise the removal of the rear wing assembly of Car 44 [Hamilton] and to impound this part under seal," read a statement.

"Further, the Technical Delegate is to supervise the transition of Car 44 into overnight conditions, permitting only those actions needed to store the car."

It's not yet evident why there's been a delay to a decision being made over whether Hamilton's car is legal or not, given that there's rarely a grey area when it comes to a car being scrutineered in accordance with the Technical Regulations.

One possible reason for the delay may be the fact that fan footage has emerged from the end of qualifying, which shows Red Bull driver Max Verstappen apparently touching the rear wing of Hamilton's car. The cars would have been in parc ferme at that moment.

Video: F1 Sprint Qualifying Races explained

The third 'F1 Sprint' event will take place at the Sao Paulo Grand Prix in Brazil. How does the new qualifying format work? Here's everything you need to know...