Lewis Hamilton hit with TEN-PLACE grid penalty in blow to world championship hopes after being forced into an engine change ahead of the Turkish Grand Prix – even after he begged Mercedes NOT to change and set him back in the title fight

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  • Lewis Hamilton has been forced to use his fourth engine of the F1 season
  • Under current rules teams are allocated to use only three per year.
  • Hamilton scored just two points in front of Max Verstappen over the weekend
  • Britain will now hope to benefit from rain and overtaking opportunities in Istanbul

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Lewis Hamilton’s bid to land a record eighth world championship has suffered a setback after he was hit with a 10-place grid penalty for this weekend’s Turkish Grand Prix.

After winning the Russian Grand Prix last time over main title rival Max Verstappen, the Brit driver enters Istanbul with a narrow two-point lead at the top of the standings.

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However, his Mercedes team has been forced to change engines before Sunday’s race, leaving them occupying an allocation of three available during the season, decimating them further down the grid.

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This weekend’s Turkey GP. Lewis Hamilton has been awarded a 10-place grid penalty before

The Mercedes ace has been forced into an engine change taking over its season allocation

The Mercedes ace has been forced into an engine change taking over its season allocation

Following Hamilton’s engine failure at the Dutch Grand Prix, Silver Arrows had reliability concerns over their two remaining power units, and replacing the engine now limits his nightmares of suffering an engine failure during a race.

The move comes as Verstappen scored a similar penalty last time in Russia, with the Red Bull star starting from the back of the grid before capitalizing on a late rain to secure a morale-boosting second place in Sochi. force to.

Hamilton was concerned about whether his team would need to take penalties, saying: ‘At the moment, I still have engine numbers two and three. I don’t think we will have to take penalty at this point of time but that may change.

Hamilton will now hope to benefit from overtaking opportunities and rain in Sunday's race

Hamilton will now hope to benefit from overtaking opportunities and rain in Sunday’s race

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff previously indicated Hamilton would need to take a penalty

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff previously indicated Hamilton would need to take a penalty

Why is Hamilton fined?

Each driver is allowed to use only three engines during the season – being free to interchange between them during the year.

However, after one of Hamilton’s engines failed the first season in Holland, this left Britain in the precarious position of relying on only two engines for the remaining nine races.

By opting to use fourth early, Hamilton could cover the enormous risk of suffering an engine failure during a race, costing him significant points in the World Championship – and the need to use a new engine anyway. Necessity will be fined.

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Despite the engine penalty hit, Hamilton can take solace that Istanbul Park has the potential to provide overtaking, especially on the long straight near the end of the lap.

With rain also predicted for the race, it gives the 36-year-old more chances to have the strength to drive in the wet, as proved last year in slippery conditions as he claimed his seventh World Championships victory in Turkey. did after.

There was always the possibility of an engine change going into Hamilton’s final seven races of the season and team boss Toto Wolff had previously stated that taking a penalty involved the possibility of an in-race failure, resulting in a grid penalty for one. Will have to suffer Regardless of engine change.

‘We believe, with the fastest lap between P1 and P2, that if you have a DNF the other guy needs four races to catch him,’ Wolff said.

‘And it’s cruel. So you can afford to finish four times in seconds [place]. So, you really need to play it safe without giving up on performance.’

Meanwhile, it was also confirmed that Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz would start at the back of the grid as his car also took on a number of new components, including engine changes.

Carlos Sainz will start from the back of the grid in Turkey, replacing his engine as well as additional components

Carlos Sainz will start from the back of the grid in Turkey, replacing his engine as well as additional components

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