Hamilton cleared over wearing jewellery in car, Mercedes fined €25,000

2022 Singapore Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton has been cleared for wearing an item of jewellery while driving, in contravention of the FIA’s rules.

However the stewards have fined his Mercedes team €25,000 (£21,980) for submitted a self-scrutineering form in which they affirmed Hamilton would not wear any jewellery this weekend.

Hamilton clashed with the FIA several times earlier this year after they began a clampdown on drivers wearing jewellery in their car. The FIA stuck to its guns over the safety push and Hamilton eventually removed a stud which had been fixed into his nose.

However, after experiencing problems with his skin in his nose healing, Hamilton began wearing a stud again this weekend and produced a doctor’s note indicating he had been advised medically to leave it in. This exemption was accepted by the FIA.

“Broadcast footage showed Hamilton wearing an item of jewellery in the form of a body piercing (nose stud) during the session,” the stewards noted. “Hamilton admitted this fact but explained that he had been advised by his doctors not to remove it for the time being.

“In response to a request by the stewards, the team produced reports from a medical practitioner which confirmed Hamilton’s explanation. The stewards then consulted the FIA Deputy Medical Delegate, Dr Ian Roberts, who viewed the medical report and concurred with the opinion therein.

“In light of the extenuating circumstances, we have determined to take no further action.”

However, as Hamilton’s nose stud was not detailed in the self-scrutineering form submitted by Mercedes, the team was found in breach of the regulations.

“Prior to [first practice] the team submitted a self-scrutiny form for car 44 [Hamilton] by which they declared that the driver complied with the requirement not to wear jewellery in the form of body piercing,” the stewards noted. “That declaration was incorrect in the case of Hamilton who had a nose piercing which he had not removed.

“The team manager explained that the team was unaware that Hamilton had a piercing. In recent events Hamilton had removed the piercing prior to the competition. The team assumed, without enquiring of Hamilton, that he had followed or would follow the same procedure for this event.”

Although the team accepted Mercedes were unaware of Hamilton’s nose stud, they fined them for supplying incorrect information. “The stewards accept that the error in the declaration in this case was not intentional or deliberate,” they noted, “but it would not have occurred had the team made an enquiry of Hamilton before completing and submitting the declaration.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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23 comments on “Hamilton cleared over wearing jewellery in car, Mercedes fined €25,000”

  1. Will they “do”this for every event? Or does he get a “‘Get-Outa-Jail’ Free” card?

  2. A fuss over a nose stud. #FIAPriorities

    1. Not a fuss but why is mercedes not filling the form right. gentlemans sport?

  3. « Rules are rules »
    Toto Wolff

  4. Double standards again.
    If another driver refused to follow the rules there would be penalties.
    And I’d love to see that “doctors note” … any self respecting doctor treating an infected piercing would have told the patient to remove the piercing and prescribe antibiotics. A note instructing him to leave it in is just a bought and ‘paid for’ excuse.
    The FIA / F1 officials don’t have the backbone to call out his indiscretions.

    1. bla bla bla

    2. Dale, “any self respecting doctor treating an infected piercing would have told the patient to remove the piercing and prescribe antibiotics”

      Actually, modern doctors would prefer to prescribe less antibiotics, and assuming the stud is made out of silver, that would have strong antimicrobial properties directly at the point of infection, so may well be the preferred course of treatment by a self respecting doctor.

  5. €25,000 for submitting incorrect information they believed to be correct at the time…. about a nose stud.
    €5,000 for an unsafe release from a pitstop.

    Sounds to me like the FIA need to review their fines.

    1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      1st October 2022, 19:02

      @swordsman_uk don’t say sensible things, you may get a lifetime ban from the FIA!

      1. @freelittlebirds Sorry, I don’t know what I was thinking! lol

        Seriously though, Mercedes made a procedural error and it seems clear that it was accidental but it should still carry a punishment. Rules are rules.

        But putting incorrect information on a form about a nose stud gets you a penalty FIVE TIMES greater than an unsafe release from a pitstop that could potentially endanger multiple people?

        1. Yes, it’s really strange, as well as some of the stop and go’s given don’t make a lot of sense, 30 sec for really minor infractions and then cause a dangerous accident like silverstone 2021, 10 sec.

    2. Great point Swordsman

  6. Why such a lenient penalty for submitting false information on the declaration?

    1. Setting precedence for when Red Bull are found to doing same

  7. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    1st October 2022, 20:24

    I have a feeling Hamilton would have won pole without the earing to weigh him down. That must have cost him 5 hundredths of a second especially since the extra weight is high in the car ;-)

    Ferrari should pay Mercedes $50,000 for gifting them pole position!

    1. Ahah, half a tenth is indeed close, but then again his choice to wear earrings!

  8. Louise is over budget on jewelry.

  9. Was it in his front nose?

  10. The FIA are NOT corrupt!

  11. Besides all these rather amateurish shenanigans. What is unsafe about a nose piercing anyway …and medical exemption; for a nose piercing. Whatever next, exemptions on culturaly sensitive grounds?

    1. P, “What is unsafe about a nose piercing anyway”

      I know most sports prohibit wearing of rings etc but that is because of the risk of them injuring someone when two players come into contact, and that is sensible and evidence-based. Rings etc may also be prohibited in the workplace because of the risks of them catching on or in machinery. Again, it is evidence based.

      The reasons I’ve heard for prohibitions in F1 are that in the event of a fire, the metal could conduct heat to the sjin, causing burns, or it could melt and cause injury. Realistically, if the fire is hot enough to melt the metal, a few contact burns are the least of the driver’s problems. I’ve heard it said that jewellry could make it harder to remove the overalls and helmet, but in practice, trauma teams cut off clothing, so snagging on a bracelet isn’t an issue. A driver might need an NMR scan and the metal would interfere with it. True, but then a driver might well have a metal bridge in his mouth, metal pins in teeth, metal screws in a bone injury, and so on. Those are all known issues for the medics. So where is the evidence on which this rule is based?

      It is worth considering that fire departments always used to have a rule that no jewellry was permitted, but nowadays the rule tends to be that no rings or visible jewellry is permitted, because of the risk of snagging, exposed metal conducting heat, etc. However, jewellry which is underneath the protective gear is absolutely fine. Since fire service personnel see more fires in one week than most drivers see in a career, they probably know what they are talking about.

      Regarding nose piercings, I think the FIA stance is that in an accident, the stud could be inhaled, causing further injury. That is true, but then teeth can come out and be inhaled, the nozzle of the water bottle could be bitten off and inhaled, contact lenses could be inhaled. We have loads of road-traffic accidents, and I am not aware of inhalation of ear rings, nose studs, etc being a common problem. If that really was a concern, Hamilton’s original stud which was welded shut and not removable was a very safe option.

      So if anyone does know of any medical-based reason why the FIA is right to ban jewellry, please speak up. Simply saying it is common sense, or it’s the rules, isn’t an answer.

  12. @alanD
    Clarification would always be nice, a pity people prefer assumptions. Looks like it’s another thing that needs to be reviewed.

  13. It is disappointing to see that safety ceases to be first priority when Sir Lewis Hamilton and his Twitter army throw a tantrum about it.

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