Todt lets Hamilton off hook after letter

Jean Todt has confirmed that he decided not to take any action against Lewis Hamilton regarding the Monaco outburst after an exchange of letters with the McLaren driver.

Hamilton was called to see the stewards after the race, and later wrote directly to Todt.

By bizarre co-incidence the drivers Lewis tangled with in Monaco – Massa and Maldonado – are both managed by Nicolas Todt.

“Lewis wrote to me and I wrote to him,” Todt Sr told British newspaper journalists. “I did not advertise it. It’s between him and the FIA. I could have asked our judicial court to address the problem. We never officially opened the case. He went to the stewards to apologise after. He went with his father.

“Maybe it would have been a better decision to put him to the court. To ban him for six Grands Prix. But he wrote to me and I wrote to him, and the thing is over.”


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19 responses to “Todt lets Hamilton off hook after letter

  1. Chris d

    How old is too old to take your dad into work meetings?

  2. I feel the need to have a little bit of a rant after reading Todt’s comments.

    Firstly, as anyone who knows me is aware, I’m not a big Lewis fan but I feel I have to support him somewhat in this issue. What he said was wrong, he knows this, but it was an off the cuff flippant remark based on his frustrations immediatey after a race. He has been chastised for those comments, has apologised to the FIA, the race stewards and on twitter and yet Todt now sees fit to make an equally flippant remark about banning him. So it’s okay for one to make an off-the-cuff remark and not for the other?

    Yes Todt’s comments weren’t as damning as Lewis’ but it’s easy to see how one little comment can be turned into a huge issue. I’m glad the matter is now over but the thought remains in my mind “who polices the FIA?” With their actions over Bahrain it’s fair to say they themselves have brought the sport into disrepute but nothing will happen to those at the top there. Those entrusted to look after the sport should be transparent in their actions too, where are their apologies?.

    • bosyber

      Good point. As some other commenters are saying too, it seems that while Todt started pretty good, it is hard to avoid become a bit like Mosely or Balestre before him: seemingly inconsistent and irrational. It must be something in the water (wine?) at the FIA headquarters.

  3. Annie

    “Maybe it would have been a better decision to put him to the court. To ban him for six Grands Prix.” –> That would have been the day I stopped watching F1 after 26 years.

    Yes, he shouldn’t have said those things. But getting a ban for races for speaking your mind? Anyone coming up with that idea has already lost their mind….

    • bosyber

      I also found that a bit odd, especially when he is okay with the exchange of letters that now happened. I mean, did Hamilton promise to never drive into Pastor and Felipe, or what did he say in those letters that made them almost equivalent to a 6 race ban. Weird, maybe Todt should have remained silent about it, if he is this clumsy with the media.

      • bosyber

        Hm, maybe not so weird after all, having re-read it. Todt says that to counter critics that think he is too non-confrontational, so he is saying that some might have liked better to see a 6-race ban, but this way they talked about it, and it is resolved without such harsh measures (and without screwing any fight for the 2011 WDC &WCC , I suppose).

    • jonas

      The ban would have been for saying the stewards were racist. Simple enough.

      • Craig

        Maybe Lewis sent him a link to a YouTube clip of Ali G then. Hope someone told him the joke doesn’t work as well when you are black though..

        You could tell that interview was going to end badly when watching it live though. Maybe McLaren need someone holding the Dictaphone to kick him in the shins more often!

    • beflox

      You can’t really be that into F1 then! I love these comments that pop up whenever Lewis is being bashed around a little …!

      There is a rule about bringing the sport into disrepute, which is what he broke, and should have been banned for, when he suggested to the world that F1 stewards are racists.

  4. kristian

    “He went with his father.”

    Plain and simple, that’s why he needs to rehire his father as his manager. Sorry, your big bucks management contract has done nothing but turn you into a whinging 12 year old.

    • Dave Myers

      He’s been a bit of a whinger before he singed with XIX this year. And he didn’t always make the best decisions with his father on board. I’m not a fan, but I’m glad the situation was resolved without disrepute charges being brought by the FIA. OK, he didn’t really choose the right words but it was very much in the heat of the moment, and I’m not sure the remarks would have had the same attention had they not occurred on a live BBC broadcast. Maybe he’ll discover a bit of humility soon, although I doubt it.

  5. D

    Todt started off keeping his head down & getting the job done with a large dose of common sense.

    Whats happened to him in the last few months? Hes turned into the reincarnation of Mad Max. Hes expected to turn into Bernies puppet at times, as he did over Bahrain where everyone can see the strings, but to come fighting back with such utter nonsense is rather self-defeating.

  6. Alex

    I watched the Senna Movie over the weekend and I was a bit shocked at the way in which Balestre dealt with things (although we were seeing ‘edited highlights’ to aid the story and narrative I guess).

    If some of those mentalities still exist within the FIA – some of their recent decisions don’t seem very surprising…

  7. Tom

    Brilliantly ironic that Todt can show such common sense and restraint here… then a week later blunder head-first into the Persian Gulf powderkeg, leaving his size three footprints all over the Arab Spring.

  8. Tom Baker

    Hamilton obviously thinks he is bigger than the sport. Todt just sent him a little message: “Consider yourself fortunate”.

  9. Stone the crows

    Todt’s comments just gave this vapid story legs for another day or so. As I said on another thread, I’ll give any driver a bit of leeway after a race and the red mist is still in his eyes. Lewis said some things he shouldn’t, and true to form tried to reel it all in with an appropriate and immediate apology to the stewards, and a late and facile so-sorry via twitter to his peers. Lewis is a great talent, and in general a decent chap, but he simply talks too much; he has yet to learn that he doesn’t have to answer every question. And if he doesn’t have the attachments to face the consequences of what he says he should learn to bite his tongue.

  10. David Ribbett

    “Fly fishing by J R Hartley”

    “Baiting in Monaco Harbour, by Lee McKenzie”

    Buy them at your favourite Tackle and Bait store ….. NOW!


  11. Stone the crows

    Just read in Autosport that Lewis spoke to Massa over the phone and to Pastor, so I think this incident is well and truly over.

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