Charlie Whiting admitted he was left amused by Lewis Hamilton’s quotes directly after the Belgian Grand Prix where the Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport driver said that Scuderia Ferrari has ‘trick things’ on their car.
Hamilton was speaking after being beaten to victory at Spa-Francorchamps by Sebastian Vettel, who was able to draft passed the reigning World Champion on the run down the Kemmel Straight on the opening lap and thereafter hold the lead with relative ease.
Whiting, the FIA race director, says Hamilton would have no idea what lies beneath the skin of the SF71H, and they are quite aware themselves of the legality of the car, of which there are no concerns coming from the stewards.
“I’m quite amused by it really,” Whiting is quoted as saying by Motorsport.com. “Because we know quite a lot about the Ferrari car, and there is no way that Lewis would know anything about the Ferrari car.
“They’re doing a good job at the moment, and Mercedes have got to try and counter that, haven’t they?
“That particular comment doesn’t actually say anything. If he says they’ve got a few tricks going on on that car, clearly they have got some things on the car which are giving it performance, which we’re all aware of – all us in the FIA are aware of – and obviously we are happy with.”
Hamilton clarified his comments not long after the race and downplayed that he meant anything sinister, feeling that Ferrari are just getting more performance from their car than Mercedes are from their W09.
“We all have trick things on our car,” said Hamilton. “Trick is just a word for something special. I don’t know what’s on their car so I couldn’t tell you either way.
“I’m not saying they are doing anything illegal. We all have something trick. It’s just something that brings that extra bit of performance.
“They just outperformed us today. There are things they might have on the car that we don’t have and vice versa and we’ve got to find out what and improve on that.”