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Mercedes not ruling out grid penalty for Hamilton

The team have not ruled out the possibility of taking a grid penalty during the final nine events of the 2021 Formula 1 season.

Hamilton Zandvoort
To news overview © Mercedes

Mercedes say they will look into taking the opportunity to run a fourth power unit if there is no "significant downside" to the prospect.

Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas are on their third power units so if they choose to take on a fourth engine, they will incur a grid penalty.

Hamilton's first and oldest power unit failed during free practice for last week's Dutch Grand Prix. Mercedes have explained they are investigating whether they can keep it in their 'engine pool'.

"We have been analysing the failed PU#1 back at Brixworth. Nothing further to share at the moment," a Mercedes spokesperson told RacingNews365.com.

"If an opportunity to take a PU#4 presents itself without significant downside, then we will look at it – but no firm plans at this stage."

Hamilton is three points behind championship leader Max Verstappen going into this weekend's Italian GP at Monza.

Verstappen is set to take a grid penalty of his own as he is on the limit of his power unit allowance. It's not yet known where Verstappen will take his grid penalty.

Mercedes have revealed that Hamilton's Friday practice power unit from Zandvoort was not going to do any more running at all this season, not even in free practice sessions.

"Fortunately that was a unit that had finished the end of its useful race, it wasn't even scheduled to do further running on a Friday from here on forward," said Mercedes' Trackside Engineering Director Andrew Shovlin.

"But we just want to understand the situation with it because it isn't to say it wouldn't appear as a spare in the future and we are just awaiting that report from HPP.”

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