Sebastian Vettel gets backing from Sir Jackie Stewart as F1 appeal picks up momentum

Vettel was stripped of his victory in Montreal after incurring a five-second penalty.

The German defended his pole position magnificently for the duration of the race.

But on lap 48 he cut across the grass at Turn 3 and almost pushed Lewis Hamilton into the wall.

The pair narrowly avoided touching, mainly due to Hamilton halting his overtake to stay behind the race leader.

Consequently, the stewards slapped Vettel with the penalty which ultimately cost him a first win of the season.

And F1 legend Stewart thinks the Ferrari star was not in the wrong.

“There is certainly room for an appeal because it was a genuine error of judgment by Sebastian,” Stewart told the Press Association.

“You shouldn’t get punished for an error of judgement, unless you spin and damage the car. The decision by the stewards was rather severe.

“When Sebastian came off the grass he had nowhere to go. His car was carrying a huge amount of speed.

“In my mind, I am 100 per cent sure that he wasn’t blocking Lewis.

“I am damn sure he didn’t even know where Lewis was in the milliseconds that the incident took place. He had no option but to do what he did.”

Ferrari have launched an appeal but in-race time penalties cannot be appealed.

However, the Italian team are attempting to challenge the decision that Vettel was guilty of dangerous driving.

If they are successful, it could overturn the five-second penalty, stripping Hamilton of his win.

But that is very unlikely and Hamilton is expected to retain his 29-point lead at the top of the standings and 62-point gap over Vettel.

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