‘Schumi’s defence was unacceptable’

Date published: September 16 2011

Mark Webber has weighed in on the Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton battle, saying the German was “pushing the boundaries”…

Mark Webber has weighed in on the Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton battle at Monza, saying there were times the German was “pushing the boundaries.”

Much of the talk in the wake of the Italian GP has been Schumacher’s defensive driving as he kept Hamilton at bay for the better part of 28 laps.

And while the Mercedes GP driver’s actions were fair for the majority of the battle, there was one incident that made headlines when the German pulled a double move to block Hamilton.

Schumacher escaped without a penalty or even a visit to the stewards’ office with Derek Daly, one of the Italian stewards, later admitting they “blew it” by not punishing the German.

Webber has weighed in on the matter, saying some of Schumacher’s moves were unacceptable.

“It was a unique fight between Michael and Lewis because the McLaren was running up against the rev limiter, so Michael had a speed advantage on the straights. He could position his car very cutely to try to keep him out,” he wrote in his BBC column.

“There were a few times when Michael returned to the normal line having defended. That’s the point of interest because it’s not what most drivers understand to be acceptable.

“Once incident in particular stood out – out of the second chicane and into Lesmo, when Lewis had a clear run and Michael went across to defend and then came back again.

“Moving that many times was pushing the boundaries.”

As for his own race, Webber retired after hitting Felipe Massa, which, given that Sebastian Vettel won the Italian GP, meant the Aussie lost more ground to his team-mate.

Webber, who has yet to win a grand prix this season, dropped to fourth in the standings and concedes that the title is over as Vettel has it in the bag. And the fight is now on for second place.

“Seb won the race again and, although he is not quite Champion again yet, we’re all now effectively fighting for second place. But I wasn’t really thinking about that.

“I just wanted to build on the momentum of Spa, which was a very strong race for me, and challenge for the win again. That’s probably what undid me early in the race.

“But it didn’t work out, and that’s the way it goes sometimes in sport.”