Lewis Hamilton hits out at fans for cheering after qualifying crash

SPIELBERG, Austria — Lewis Hamilton has wondered why fans were cheering at the Austrian Grand Prix after he crashed out of qualifying on Friday night.

Hamilton lost control of his Mercedes at Turn 7 and crashed into the barriers lining the outside of the track. The impact was strong enough to damage his car’s survival cell, which is the last layer of protection for the driver in an accident.

Hamilton was unharmed, but just moments after the impact and while he was still in the car, fans in one of the main stands were filmed celebrating the incident.

Asked about the reaction on Saturday night, Hamilton said that spectators at races should have more respect for the dangers associated with Formula 1.

“I didn’t hear them cheering, I went through a lot of things in the crash,” he said. “To hear it afterwards, I don’t agree or condone it. A driver could be in the hospital and you will cheer?

“Knowing how dangerous our sport is, I’m grateful. Why would you cheer someone’s fall or injury like that? That shouldn’t have happened at Silverstone [when Max Verstappen crashed on the opening lap last year] and that shouldn’t be happening here.”

The incident meant Hamilton started Saturday’s sprint race in 10th place, but he managed to work his way up to eighth place, which will now be his starting position for Sunday’s Austrian Grand Prix.

“A big thank you to my team for putting my car back together. They worked incredibly hard overnight and this morning to keep us in the race so I hope tomorrow will be a good day,” added Hamilton.

https://www.espn.com/f1/story/_/id/34217940/austrian-gp-lewis-hamilton-hits-fans-cheering-qualifying-crash Lewis Hamilton hits out at fans for cheering after qualifying crash

Emma Bowman

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